Peretz approves Wall route around Maali Adumim

Israeli Defense Minister, Amir Peretz, approved the original route of
the Annexation Wall that will surround Maali Adumim settlement by annexing
more Palestinian lands and placing them inside the settlement’s enclave.

The Israeli Jerusalem post reported that 64,000 Dunams (about 15,800 acres) of Palestinian lands will be inside the Israeli side of the Wall.

Shlomo Lecker, Jerusalem lawyer representing Palestinian petitioners from Abu Dis and Al Sawahra Al Sharqiyya, told the Jerusalem post on Thursday that he was informed of Peretz’s decision by the attorney of the Israeli Justice Ministry Corinaldi-Sirkis, the state representative in the petitions.

Lecker objected to three segments of the 38-kilometer-long Wall, the Jerusalem Post reported. The Israeli Justice Ministry spokesman was unable to confirm or deny the report since he was out of the country, the Jerusalem Post added.

Israeli officials expected Israel’s Defense Minister, Amir Peretz, to make some changes in the route of the Wall after previous criticisms on the route of the Wall in several areas in the occupied West Bank.

 
The previous Israeli government approved on February 2, 2005, the route of the Annexation Wall after making sure that it creates the enclave around Maali Adumim by annexing more Palestinian lands there.

The Wall route in that area surrounds Maali Adumim and plunges 7 kilometers south to include the settlement of Keidar (population 620) within its confines, then heads northeast past the Mishor Adumim industrial area and cuts across the Jerusalem-Jericho highway to include the settlement of Alon.

From there, it winds its way west back toward Jerusalem and includes the settlements of Kfar Adumim (population 2,100), Nofei Perat (population 240) and Almon (population 720.), the Jerusalem post reported.

This route makes sure that these settlements are on the Israeli side of the Wall by annexing more Palestinian lands and isolating more Palestinian areas.

Lecker also said that the Wall is 10 km away from Maali Adumim settlement, bisects Jerusalem-Jericho Highway and is located 15 km away from away at it farthest point along the route.

Residents of the three Palestinian towns appealed against a small section of the Wall since it causes direct damage to their property.

The Israeli Council for Peace and Security submitted a brief to the Israeli High Court of Justice stating that the route of the Annexation Wall is taking much more land than planned.

The council said that the Wall is located far away from the areas “Israel is trying to protect,” and that it is creating security problems and difficulties that would require expensive solutions, especially the humanpower and money needed for installing and maintaining the Wall.

The council suggested that the Wall should be moved closer to Maali Adumim, restoring half of the 64,000 Dumans in the enclave to the West Bank.

The Jerusalem Post added that the council recommended building a special security fence around Keidar to protect it, which reduces the route by 14 km.

On March 26, a few days before Amir Peretz became the Israeli Defense Minister, the Israeli High Court held its first and only hearing on petitions regarding this case.

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