New apartheid plans encourage settlement construction in Area (E1)

By: Madeeha Al-A’raj/ NBPRS/

The National Bureau for defending land and resisting settlements (NBPRS) stated in its latest weekly report, that the Israeli Occupation Government approved last week to allocate NIS 14 million to open the so-called “Sovereignty Road” within the settlement project known as ‘E1’ east of Jerusalem. Accordingly, the northern entrance of Al-Eizeriya will be closed and the Al-Zaiem Checkpoint will be moved toward the settlement of Mishor Adumim, which will facilitate the crossing of Maale Adumim’s settlers on their way to Jerusalem. At the same time, the Palestinians will not be able to reach the Al-Eizreriya from its northern entrance. Moreover, the project includes the opening of a road and a tunnel start from the Al-Z’ayyem toward Al-Eizariya and Abu Dis, only to be used by the settlers of ‘Maale Adumim Settlement’. All of this comes in light of the 4th Knesset election, which Netanyahu’s uses as a campaign to promote his position, and to eliminate the possibility of a two-state solution. The road is simply designed to cutting off the West Bank into cantons.

The ‘Sovereignty Road project’ that was approved by the former Israeli Army Minister, Naftali Bennett in last March, is considered a decisive step for separating the southern West Bank from its center on one hand, and to build more and more settlement in the Area E1. Within the context, the Israeli Information Center for Human Rights in the Occupied Territories ‘B’Tselem’ described Israel as ‘Apartheid State’ that has divided the lands extending between the river and the sea into different units that are distinguished from each other in the way it controls and defines the rights of the Palestinian citizens. This division is related to the Palestinians only. Thus, the continuous geographical space for the Jews is for the Palestinians considered as a mosaic space made up of different pieces.

On the other hand, the Israeli government employs the terrorist organization ‘Hills Youth’ to harm the rights of the Palestinians, as the extreme right-wing movement leads all the operations of settlers in the West Bank that affect Palestinians by destroying and sabotaging their agricultural lands, or by attacking their homes, throwing stones at their vehicles, and smashing them. Since the death of a settler after being pursued by the Israeli police. Official Israeli data showed that there has been a marked increase in violent incidents committed by settlers against Palestinians in the West Bank, as official data from the Israeli Army Ministry indicated that Dec. 2020 witnessed an increase in the most violent attacks than that since 2017.

As for the Israeli settlement activities, they are accelerated in the period leading up to the inauguration of the US President-elect, Joe Biden, where Netanyahu instructed the competent authorities to approve the construction of 800 settlement units in several settlements in the West Bank, including Jerusalem. This includes the construction of 500 settlement units in the ‘Itamar settlements’ east of Nablus, ‘Beit El’ north of Ramallah, ‘Shafi Shomron’ west of Nablus, ‘Oranit near Qalqilya, and ‘Pisgat Zeev’ north of Jerusalem. Approval will also be given to building about 250 settlement units in an outpost called ‘Novi Nakhmiya’. There is also a talk about approving the construction of about 100 settlement units in the settlement of ‘Tal Menashe’, west of Jenin. Netanyahu’s statement confirmed that he has also ordered a plan to build about 400 additional housing units in ‘Beit El, Aviatar, Shafi Shomron, Shekhunat Hvatikim, the Barkan Industrial Zone, Karni Shomron and Givat Ze’ev. A local committee of the occupation authorities has also approved the construction of 530 settlement units east of occupied Jerusalem. It was decided to build 400 units in the ‘Gilo settlement’ southwest of Jerusalem, and 130 in ‘Ramat Shlomo settlement’ to the north. A special committee from the socalled Jerusalem Municipality approved plans to establish 2 diplomatic complexes, one of which is to expand the headquarters of the US Embassy in the occupied city, with an area of 50,000m2, a diplomatic complex for several embassies near the Allenby Street on an area of 60,000m2.