Israelâ€™s right-wing government, led by the Likud Party, is trying to improve the image of the settlement to the Israeli public and world opinion, aiming to encourage and settle Jewish communities including immigrants from Arab countries, Iran, Ethiopia and India in Israel, through broadcasting video clips via internet and mobile phones, accompanied by the production of films about the â€śheritage of settlementâ€ť and shared by the Council of Settlements and the Menachem Begin Heritage Center.
PNN reports that the Head of the Council of Settlements, Hananel Dorni, said that the settlement project will contribute greatly to the consolidation of settlements and improve their image. The official television channel has abandoned the broadcast of the Israeli national teamâ€™s matches in the Euro and World Cup champions, in response to the request by the European Football Association not to broadcast matches in the settlements, under the contract signed with it, which states that broadcasting rights shall be in Israel and do not include the Palestinian territories, i.e. the West Bank and Gaza Strip. According to Yedioth, the Union did not clarify whether the broadcast applies to occupied Jerusalem or not.
This development was a blow to Israeli policy in the Palestinian territories occupied since 1967, prompting the Minister of Culture and Sports, Miri Regev, to express anger and frustration to declare that â€śsports organizations wonâ€™t draw the borders of the state,â€ť saying that â€śit is time to understand that Judea and Samaria is an inseparable part of the State of Israel, and the broadcast must include hundreds of thousands of our citizens living in Judea and Samaria.” Recently, a number of settlement associations have been identified as seeking to lay their hands on Palestinian homes in the Sheikh Jarrah neighborhood, with the aim of Judaizing them completely. Those organizations are suing the Supreme Court of Israel, which will hold a hearing on the evacuation of the 29 neighborhood inhabited by 100 Palestinian families.
UPDATE:Â The Israeli Supreme Court approved, on Thursday, a decision to remove dozens of Palestinian families from their homes in the Palestinian neighborhood of Silwan, in occupied East Jerusalem, after rejecting a petition by the families.
According to Ma’an News Agency, the court also allowed the Israeli-Jewish settler group, Ateret Cohanim, to continue with plans to expel 700 Palestinians from their homes, claiming the homes were built on lands owned by Jews before 1948.
The court’s decision means that more than 100 Palestinian families will lose their homes to Israeli settlers.
In Jerusalem, the municipality of occupation has also announced the establishment of a new plan for building a hotel on land in the area of Jabal Mukaber, southeast of Jerusalem, within a series of hotels to be built in that area, overlooking the Old City. The project includes the establishment 20,000 settlement units at the expense of the lands of the Sawahra and Soor Baher. The so-called â€śLocal Committee for Organization and Buildingâ€ť in Jerusalem discussed the plan for the establishment of hotels and settlement units in the area of Jabal Mukaber, on the eastern side of the High Commissionerâ€™s Club, in an area of 48 thousand square feet, along with public buildings, including kindergartens and a synagogue, 40 dunams to expand the colony of Kana, on the lands of the village of Mesha, and there is a plan to build 80 new settlement units in the colony, which was established in 1977, by more than three thousand settlers.
Within the context of the restrictions imposed by Israel, on the Palestinians in the Jenin Governorate, the Israeli occupation forces seized 29 dunams of agricultural land in the village of Jalameh, east of Jenin, adjacent to the Jalameh camp, under the pretext of â€śsecurity reasons.â€ť Moreover, they handed over confiscation orders to members of the Abu Farha family living in the town, for security reasons. The land belonged to six members of the Abu Farha family: Othman Abdel Hadi, Fawzi Sadiq, Abdel Rahim Mohâ€™d Marâ€™i, Reza Hassan, Mahâ€™d Qassem Abdullah Saâ€™id and Sadik Hassan, all of whom were informed by the occupation that their land was taken for security reasons. The land is located on the 1948 borders.
In the Bethlehem governorate, the Israeli Supreme Court issued a decision not to commit itself to preventing the demolition of Tahdi 5 school, in the Jab al-Zab area of the Beit Taâ€™mir village. The decision gives a green light to settlers and occupation forces to demolish the school, which has been subjected to many demolition attempts in the past.
Last week, 15 Knesset members went to the Israeli PM Netanyahu to call for an end to the activity of the international force in Hebron. This trend took place after the â€śSarahâ€™s Lifeâ€ť ceremony, in the Jewish Quarter of Hebron, last weekend, attended by 40,000 persons. Members of the Knesset from the Land of Israel lobby claim that, since the deployment of the international force in Hebron, about 22 years have passed, during which it has been shown that the force of the observers is a one-sided force, and causes damage to the Israeli army, the Jewish population and the state of Israel, adding that the observers regularly harass Jews living in the city, along with their children, and contrary to the mandate given to it, and that it organizes media tours hostile to Israelâ€™s diplomatic representatives and are joint activities with BDS organizations and activists.
The National Bureau called on the UNESCO to hold to its responsibilities and fulfill its obligations to protect Jerusalem, its religious and cultural identity, and to hold the occupying state accountable for its grave violations of international law and other relevant international laws. It was disclosed that a new tunnel with three sub-tunnels extending from the Ein Silwan area, to the south of Al-Aqsa Mosque and towards Al-Buraq Square, are being bulldozed and ramified. The details were not disclosed accurately, but preliminary data indicate that the tunnel length is 600 meters and deep beyond three layers.
Chris Carlson is a student of religion at Mount Mercy University, United States, and has been a regular volunteer with the IMEMC since 2013. He assisted in providing extensive coverage of the 2014 Israeli military offensive on the Gaza Strip and continues, into the present day, with the issues at hand. He can be reached via email at c h r i s @ i m e m c . o r g.