Report: New Settlement Plan to Besiege Bethlehem

10 Jan
3:56 AM

In its weekly report on Israeli settlement activities in the occupied West Bank, including Jerusalem, the National Bureau for the Defense of  Land  stated that the Israeli occupation government continues imposing dominance through building, expanding settlements and approving additional settlement plans to strengthen control on the Palestinian land in the West Bank, including Jerusalem.

Within the context of the settlement plans and the electoral battle, a plan was put forward to build 2,500 settlement units near the Efrat settlement, to the south of Bethlehem, in a project called “E-II” that relies on Israeli PM Netanyahu’s support in order to get the votes of the Israeli right-wing, and to prevent any development or expansion in the city.

The so-called Israeli “civil administration” allows settlers to set up an “agricultural farm” in the area, as well as posting notices on its website that it plans to build hundreds of housing units on 1,182 dunams of the city, and, if the 2,500 additional settlement units are built, the project could transform the settlement into a new city to be added to the 4 settlements that were classified as Israeli cities, which are Elit – south of occupied Jerusalem, Betar Illit – south of Jerusalem, Ma’ali Adumim – East Jerusalem  and Ariel – on the lands of the governorate and the city of Salfit, south of Nablus.

Around Jerusalem, the Israeli Ministry of Housing and Construction also plans to build 459 new housing units in the Kikar Kedem settlement. In mid-December, the ministry published a NIS 20 tender for the rehabilitation and development of the infrastructure and construction, there. Besides this, there is also a plan to build 5,250 new housing units, 300 hotel rooms, commercial and industrial areas, and parking on a hill north of Al-Walaja village, in occupied Jerusalem. The plan is part of a comprehensive move to survey the “Green Line separating the territories occupied in 1948 and the territories occupied in 1967.” It was recently revealed that the “Horizon Settlement Association” is behind all of this, and finances the re-construction of the Amona settlement, which Israeli settlers returned to on 14th  of last month, after vacating two years ago, and have since erected new buildings, saying that they bought the land.

Occupation authorities use various methods and tricks to prevent citizens from reaching their land, according to the PNN. They systematically loot Palestinian property by preventing them access into their agricultural lands, in the areas between the Apartheid Wall and the Green Line, which amount to 137,000 dunams. The so-called Israeli Civil Administration significantly reduced the number of Palestinian farmers allowed to work in their land located in the green line, and the percentage of refusal to grant permits to Palestinian farmers to work in their land reached 72% in 2018, compared to 24% in 2014. From the beginning of 2018 until 25 November, the Civil Administration agreed to 1876 agricultural permits out of 7187 applications. This means that there is an even higher percentage of increase in refusal to grant permits compared to 2014. In 2008, 83% of the applications were rejected on grounds of “non-compliance” or “security reasons” or “land is too small to be exploited.”

Within this context, more information has emerged, with regard to Jewish terror organizations in the West Bank settlements, where a senior Israeli security source has warned that terrorist settler gangs are committing crimes against Palestinian citizens in the occupied West Bank. This includes the targeting of Palestinian figures, as happened recently with photo of PA President Mahmoud Abbas, and attacking the convoy of PM Dr. Rami Hamdallah at the Za’tara Junction, south of Nablus.

At the same time, Israeli security has revealed disturbing data about the escalation of “Jewish terrorism” operations over the past year, a steady increase of 30% over the previous year. According to data published by Israeli security forces, over the past year, 300 terrorist attacks have been carried out by Jewish extremist groups. Despite the security warnings, it is clear that the Israeli Judiciary is an integral part of the occupation system and its resolutions have nothing to do with the law.

Opinion/Analysis 01/02/19 DCIP: 2018 Reigned Deadly Force On Palestinian Children

Facebooktwitterredditpinterestlinkedintumblrmail
« »

IMEMC News & Agencies

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.

Related Articles