JERUSALEM, July 4, 2016 (WAFA) – The Israeli government has approved the construction of 800 housing units in illegal Israeli settlements in East Jerusalem, according to Israel Channel 10.
The channel said the approved 800 units include 560 housing units in Ma’ale Adumim settlement, while the remaining 240 others will be allocated to the settlement neighborhood of Pesgat Ze’ev and Har Homa.
According to Israeli media sources, the approval of the 800 housing units came in the aftermath of an armed attack which targeted an Israeli vehicle near Hebron last Friday, which resulted in the killing of an Israeli settler and the injury of two others.
To be noted, Israeli settlement activities in the Occupied Palestinian Territories and the Golan Heights, both occupied since 1967, are considered illegal under international law.
The settler population in the West Bank is estimated at 531,000: in late 2012 the population of the West Bank settlements was 341,400; in late 2011 there were 190,423 individuals living in Israeli neighborhoods in East Jerusalem.
B’Tselem, an Israeli human rights group, says: “The settlements have been allocated vast areas, far exceeding their built-up sections. These areas have been declared closed military zones by military orders and are off s to Palestinians, except by special permit. In contrast, Israeli citizens, Jews from anywhere in the world and tourists may all freely enter these areas.”
According to a report by Applied Research Institute (ARIJ), “The consecutive Israeli governments adopted a policy to acquire much of the West Bank lands to build and expand the Israeli settlements by employing different methods; most renowned of which, “Security,” which is also, how Israel was able to restrict Palestinian towns’ development on the remaining areas.”