The Israeli settler-led government, headed by Benjamin Netanyahu of the Likud Party, decided to construct additional 700 homes for Jewish settlers in illegal settlements it considers part of the “Greater Jerusalem” area. The so-called Israeli Housing Ministry invited the contractors to place their bids for the construction of 198 setter homes in Pisgat Zeev illegal settlement, 377 in Neve Yakov, and 117 in Jabal Abu Ghneim (Har Homa), all near Jerusalem.

Israel considers the constructions as part of the so-called Greater Jerusalem, although settlements are built in violation of the International Law and the Fourth Geneva Conventions.

The Israeli government said that the constructions are in “Jerusalem neighborhoods”, and are not included in settlement freeze, although the lands were stolen from the Palestinian people.

Nabil Abu Rodeina, spokesperson of President Mahmoud Abbas, said that Israel is exploiting the International Community and the United States, by claiming it froze its settlement activities for ten months.

Benjamin Netanyahu, announced in November a 10-month freeze of settlement activities in the West Bank, but said that Israel will not freeze the constructions in Jerusalem.

The Palestinian Authority of Mahmoud Abbas said it will not be holding peace talks with Israel until it freezes all of its settlement activities.
He added that all settlements in the occupied territories are illegal.

There are nearly 500.000 Jewish settlers living in the occupied West Bank, including in occupied Jerusalem.

According to the International Law, settlements are considered war crimes, and they also violate the Fourth Geneva Convention.