illegal settlement of Ofra, north of Ramallah Source:. REUTERS

  Israel approves 1,450 new settlement units in West Bank  

PNN/ Jerusalem/

The Israeli “Civil Administration” has approved the construction of 1,451 new housing units in West Bank settlements and advanced plans for the construction of 837 additional units, some in relatively isolated settlements, Haaretz reported.

Haaretz said that the settlement Subcommittee in the administration’s Supreme Planning Council discussed the plans on Tuesday and Wednesday, and gave a final approval for 30 of these units.

The council approved 220 housing units in Givat Ze’ev, 180 in Neveh Daniel, 120 in Karmei Tzur, 129 in Avnei Hefetz, 62 in Ma’aleh Mikhmash, 61 in Tzofim, 42 in Alfei Menashe, 55 in Tomer, 18 in Adora, 16 in Metzad and one in Shiloh.

Additionally, 135 housing units were approved for the expansion of the eastern neighborhood of the Tene Omarim settlement, pending final approval by the Civil Administration’s environmental supervisors.

Thirteen plans in preliminary stages of planning were advanced, including plans for 152 units in Shavei Shomron, 94 in Haggai, 100 in Halamish, 75 in Shvut Rachel, a neighborhood in of Shiloh that functions as a separate settlement, 98 near Ma’aleh Amos, 82 in Ofra and two in Tzofim.

PLO Secretary General, Dr. Saeb Erekat in response to the decision said that “it is of utmost urgency for the International Criminal Court to accelerate the process of investigating Israeli crimes.

While the world is celebrating Christmas with its spirit of peace and joy, the Grinch “occupation” decided to steal the Christmas spirit from the people of Palestine.

In a statement, Erekat said that as part of his early election campaign, the Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has as well stolen more Palestinian land and resources for the benefit of Israel’s illegal colonial settlement expansion.

“What we witnessed in the previous Israeli elections was an evident incitement race against the rights of the Palestinian people, their lives, land, and resources, for the benefit of Israel’s colonial settlement project and to appease its settlers. Such illegal actions are a deliberate campaign to destroy the two-state solution and to prevent the establishment of an independent and sovereign State of Palestine with East Jerusalem as its capital,” Erekat said.

Erekat concluded by saying that the world has to act before it is too late.

“In fact, Israel’s disregard and contempt to international law and legitimacy have been encouraged by the lack of international accountability, and therefore, the time has come for the world to end its double standards and to act with determination and courage to fulfill its responsibilities towards the people of Palestine. To this regard, the collective international responsibility should ensure the implementation of UNSC 2334 towards holding Israel accountable for its ongoing crimes against the people of Palestine,” he added.