Benett Defies Intl. Pressures, Vows To Continue Settlement Construction

Ramallah/PNN/ By: Madeeha Al-A’raj

The National Bureau for defending land and resisting settlements ( nbprs ) stated in its latest weekly report, that in his first television interview with the Israeli Channel 12, Naftali Bennett, the upcoming Israeli prime minister confirmed that his government won’t freeze construction in settlements in the West Bank. He expects that his government would be subject to American pressure on settlements in the West Bank; however, he said that he would not stop settlement construction.

It is worth mentioning here that the agreements that were formulated between the Zionist center and right-wing parties in this government, such as the Yesh Atid parties and the Yemina parties and Tikva Hadasha have clearly stipulated the formation of a monitoring body to maintain Area C in the occupied West Bank, in addition to expanding what it calls heritage sites and approving 300,000 housing units without specifying the locations of these projects.

For its part, the occupation municipality in occupied Jerusalem, the so-called “Nature Authority”, the Israeli Ministry of Religions and Settlement Associations revived “13” projects in the occupied East Jerusalem, most of which in the vicinity of the Old City related to the expansion of existing tunnels in the area south of Al-Aqsa Mosque and in the Umayyad palaces, and building bridges and biblical passages in the so-called “holy basin”, which were approved during the years 2019, 2020, 2021.

Financial budgets have been allocated to each of them, with the exception of the bridge that extends from the Jewish cemetery in Al-Tur to the endowment lands in Silwan, worth NIS 90 million, according to an amended plan that includes parts of the Bab Al-Rahma cemetery. It was supposed to actually start implementing the project at the beginning of last May, but the recent events in Jerusalem and the Israeli aggression on the Gaza Strip led to the postponement of its implementation.

The occupation municipality has drawn up all the engineering plans and maps, and the area was inspected by engineers in preparation for starting work on the project, preparing the infrastructure for that, and erecting columns. The bridge is 350 meters long and 35 meters above the ground. It will be built over the Kidron Valley, in which the occupation authorities confiscated 100 acres of land in favor of the bridge. The bridge would link the Jewish cemetery on the Mount of Olives and Ras al-Amud, all the way to the main street leading to the town of Silwan near the Umayyad palaces.

Israeli sources revealed an Israeli plan to replace the existing reality in Jerusalem through a large-scale construction project at a cost of NIS 70 million that includes the establishment of a spacious urban neighborhood, improving squares, and providing light shows that are broadcast there.

In the first phase, the area of the Electricity Company in Salah El-Din Street will be improved, as the infrastructure and building facades will be improved. Moshe Lion, mayor of the occupation in Jerusalem, claimed that this initiative aims to strengthen relations with the residents of East Jerusalem, develop infrastructure, commercial life, and employment in the area, with the aim of improving the lives of the residents.

Moreover, the policy of displacement continues in Jerusalem, where the “Net” company, one of the largest tourism and hotel companies in the occupied city faces the threat of eviction from its building and adjacent land with an area of 8 dunums in the Sheikh Jarrah neighborhood in the latest series of evacuation and settlement in the neighborhood.

The building is located near the land of the Mufti in the neighborhood and opposite the house of the former Mufti of Jerusalem Haj Amin Al-Husseini, where the “Atirat Cohanim” Settlement Association established a settlement of more than 24 settlement units, and more apartments are being built on it.

The Ateret Cohanim Association says in one of the documents it sent to the Israeli municipality that the owner of the company, Sami Abu Dayeh, is a capable man and has lawyers who threaten what we are planning, and therefore we must expedite the eviction process, while Abu Dayyeh warns against the Israeli authorities evacuating his company from the building and the land adjacent to it, which is part of a 39 dunums, most of which was confiscated by the Israeli authorities.

At the same time, the so-called settlement sub-committee announced the deposit of a detailed structural plan for the settlement of Ma’ale Michmas, which was built on the lands of the village Dir Dibwan on an area of 800 dunums to establish a new settlement neighborhood in the settlement by the year 2040.

The same committee also announced the deposit of the detailed structural plan n 3/237 of the “Eli” settlement built on the lands of the village Qariot in the Nablus Governorate in the well-known site Jabal al-Rahut on an area of 403.5 dunums for the establishment of 628 settlement units, buildings, and public institutions.

Meanwhile, the Local Committee for Planning and Building in the occupation Jerusalem Municipality announced the approval of a detailed structural plan project for the settlement Jabal Abu Ghneim, the western region, to establish 540 housing units consisting of 3 residential buildings of 10 floors, besides 2 housing buildings of 30 floors on an area of 27,7 acres.
The occupation authorities also approved the project to extend the tunnel of Street n. 1, which bears the number 0477679-101, and this tunnel is located in the Al-Masara area in occupied East Jerusalem towards the north on an area of 44.8 dunams.

The implementation of the detailed structural plan n 10/5/T/130 for the “Burkan” industrial zone, which was built on the lands of the Haris village in the Nablus Governorate, on an area of 262 dunums. Hebrew sources revealed that, in recent weeks, the settlers managed to build more than 40 settlement units inside one of the settlement outposts south of Nablus.

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