On the Al Jazeera Newshour today, I spoke to Israeli spokesman Mark Regev. Mostly we discussed the prisoner exchange, but I also asked him whether the possibility of any further peace talks may have been compromised by talk of a new settlement in Jerusalem.


I was referring to the widely covered story that Israel was planning a major new expansion of settlements in Jerusalem.

Israeli newspaper Ha'aretz said of the plan:


The creation of a new neighbourhood beyond the June 4, 1967, border empties of all meaning Netanyahu's commitment to negotiate all of the core issues.


The news drew criticism from Denmark, from Italy and from France, among others.


And yet Mark Regev denied that any such plan exists.

"There has been no such announcement," he said.

Perhaps not. But does that mean the same thing as "there are no such plans"?