AFP’s Settlement Error

Take a look at the opening paragraph of an AFP story on the breakdown of peace talks:

US Secretary of State John Kerry has blamed approval of Jewish settlements in East Jerusalem for derailing peace talks with Palestinians, a charge that pricked Israeli officials and sent aides into damage control.

Even if we were to accept the inaccurate terminology used to describe what are actually Jewish neighborhoods or suburbs of Jerusalem – which we don’t – AFP is evidently confused. The approval that the sentence refers to is for building units in existing neighborhoods, not the creation of new settlements as the sentence mistakenly implies.

When the media cannot distinguish between cities, neighborhoods, individual buildings or isolated hilltops, is it any wonder that there is no nuance in reporting on the settlement issue?

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