Israel's deputy foreign minister says cadets training to become diplomats will now visit the West Bank and be taught how to defend Jewish settlements there.

Tzipi Hotovely told Israel's Army Radio on Sunday that she initiated changes in the course curriculum to include a greater emphasis on the Jewish people's ancient links to the land. It will include compulsory tours to the City of David, a Jewish settlement in traditionally Arab east Jerusalem, seized by Israel in the 1967 war.

Hotovely says it is important to stress that Jewish settlements are legal "by law and custom."

The international community generally considers settlement in lands captured in the 1967 war to be illegal and illegitimate. With Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu also serving as foreign minister, Hotovely oversees the office's day-to-day operations.