Settlements continue to sprawl amid increasing home demolitions in OPT

by : Madeeha AAraj/ NBPRS/

The  National Bureau for defending land and resisting settlements ( nbprs ) stated in its latest weekly report , that the political and media circles said that Israeli PM Netanyahu had frozen plans for settlement construction in the West Bank last week, including the Jordan Valley, and he didn’t grant permits for settlement expansion over the last months. In fact, whathas been leaked is part of the political maneuvers and lies that Netanyahu and some circles in his government carry out with the aim of calming down reactions on Israeli settlement plans, and annexation plans, which are still on the agenda of Benjamin Netanyahu and the ruling right-wing parties in Israel.

Evidences are many as they have approved the building of thousands of settlement units on the lands of the villages of Al-Tur, Anata, Al-Eizariya, and Abu Dis in E1 area, as part of the Greater Jerusalem settlement project, which would lead to linking all the settlements located in the eastern area and outside the borders of the municipality of the occupation in Jerusalem with the settlements within the municipal boundaries of Moshe Lyon, and thus it turns Arab villages into besieged ghettos, besides the fact that annexing large areas of land in the West Bank to the boundaries of the Greater Jerusalem municipality according to the plans.

The National Bureau for Defending the Land and Resisting settlement stated in its recent reports that a discussion had taken place in back channels of communication within the Israeli government coalition and with the White House to start construction in the aforementioned area in the context of planning to annex settlement blocs in the vicinity of Jerusalem to the city to expand its borders to what Israel names “Greater Jerusalem” as a step that could be acceptable and as a starting point in the annexation process and the implementation of US President Donald Trump’s vision.

In any case, a member of the “Meretz Party”, Lores Wharton, unveiled a bid to build 5,300 settlement units on the borders of the Green Line south of Jerusalem, part of them on Al Walaja lands in the occupied West Bank, and said that the Appeals Committee of the Planning and Building Council will discuss within a month the objections that were submitted to preserve urban natural sites. According to the tender published by the “Moria” company affiliated with the municipality, which will implement development work for itself and the Jerusalem municipality to build a new residential settlement neighborhood on the southern slopes in south Jerusalem, and that the area of ​​the plan is distributed over 840 dunums, it is proposed to build a new residential neighborhood with about 5,000 apartments and about 300 protected housing units. The construction of apartments in complexes consisting of 5-12 floors according to the nature of the mountainous region. According to the plan, the area is extended in the form of a strip located between West Jerusalem and the West Bank lands, which is a forested area located south of the city.

At the same time, a plan to build a new settlement city in the Jordan Valley was unveiled, as the Hebrew Channel 7 reported: A group called “Israel 2030” announced the erection of a new city in the Jordan Valley, adding that the site of the new city is located on the axis. Alon “near the Moshav Getet settlement.” The first phase of building the city includes building about thousands of housing units on the site. The Hebrew Channel quoted Major General Gershon HaCohen of the “security” movement “an Israeli movement that includes officers in the occupation army”, which announced its participation in building the settlement city, as saying: “This is an opportunity for Netanyahu after postponing the implementation of sovereignty (the annexation plan) to lead the establishment of a city in the Jordan Valley. As part of the consolidation of sovereignty, HaCohen claimed that there is a broad consensus in “Israel” about the future of the Jordan Valley, calling on Netanyahu to support the establishment of the city.

On the other hand, the so-called Israeli Supreme Court approved a regulation allowing for the confiscation of land with private Palestinian ownership, after it issued a decision to evacuate the settlement outpost of “Mitzpe Karmim” built on private Palestinian land and accept the appeal of the landowners (Hazem Ajaj and Rabi` Dawood) in the village of Deir Jarir, east of Ramallah. In its decision, it touched the so-called “market” regulation, which allows the confiscation of private Palestinian lands if the land is transferred the “market” regulation is based on section 5 of Order n. 59 on government property in the West Bank, according to which: “The transaction between the government property commissioner in the occupied territories and another person will remain in effect, even “if it turns out at a later time that the movable property was not in fact governmental. That is, as long as the transaction was done (as it has been called) it is ‘good faith’.” In the reactions of the extreme Israeli right to the decision to evacuate the settlement outpost, the former Israeli Minister of Justice, Ayelet Shaked, said in a tweet on her Twitter account that the Supreme Court’s decision is a damn ruling that must be abolished and claimed that there is no justice in the treatment of the residents of that settlement outpost. Smotrich asked Netanyahu to work to impose legislation that cancels the court’s decision, considering that if he does not do so, “history will judge him and remember him as the prime minister who caused the destruction of the settlement ‘Mitzpe Karmim’ and perpetuate the ruling of the left-wing Supreme Court.