Israeli settlers, on Sunday, set up caravans on lands near the village of al-Khader, to the south of Bethlehem, in the occupied West Bank, according to local sources.

Ahmad Salah, coordinator of the Anti-Settlement Committee in the village, told WAFA that a group of settlers set up five caravans on lands outside the village.

Salah said that this move aims at expanding a nearby illegal settlement outpost. It came only a few months after Israel opened a road in the area to serve illegal settlers.

Earlier this month, the Israeli government approved the construction of a new settlement near Ramallah to house settlers removed from Amona, a controversial settlement outpost from which settlers were evacuated in February.

It also approved the construction of tens of thousands of new housing units in existing settlements throughout the occupied West Bank and East Jerusalem.

The international community regards all settlements built on land occupied in June 1967 as illegal under international law and calls on Israel to remove them.

(PNN archive image.)