US paper reveals Israel settlement boom on occupied lands

A US new report emerged that Israel has approved 13,000 settlement units in the occupied West Bank since Tel Aviv's partial freeze on the projects expired late September.

US paper reveals Israel settlement boom on occupied lands

A US new report emerged that Israel has approved 13,000 settlement units in the occupied West Bank since Tel Aviv's partial freeze on the projects expired late September.

Rights group Peace Now said that a total of 13,000 units are in the pipeline that did not require additional permits, The New York Times reported on Wednesday.

The report added that the boom of new buildings is mostly in remote communities that are least likely to be part of Israel after any two-state solution.

The international community has repeatedly urged Israel to stop the expansion to help resolve the decades-long conflict.

The New York Times also said that construction of settler units in East Jerusalem, where the Palestinians deem as their future capital, has been rapidly growing after a break of half a year, with hundreds of units approved and thousands more planned.

Dror Etkes, an anti-settlement advocate who has spent the past nine years chronicling their growth, said he doubted whether there had been such a burst in settlement construction in at least a decade.

"We can say firmly that this is the most active period in many years," Hagit Ofran of Peace Now said, adding that there were 2,000 units being built now.

The settlements are considered illegal under the international law due to their construction on the occupied land.

The renewed direct talks between Israel and the Palestinian Authority were stalled after Tel Aviv refused to extend a 10-month moratorium on the settlement buildings.

Agencies

Last Mod: 24 Aralık 2010, 10:20
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