10/18/2017, 10.30
ISRAEL - PALESTINE
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Israel plans to build 1292 settlements in the West Bank

Peace Now: The project will "affect the West Bank". Permits expected to be issued today to speed up the construction process. The government plan targets significant growth in settlements in Palestinian territories. For the first time since 2002, Hebron also involved.

Jerusalem (AsiaNews / Agencies) - The expansion plan enacted by Israeli authorities continues, and envisages the construction of 1,292 new settlements in the Occupied Territories of the West Bank. According to Israeli NGO Peace Now activists, ahead of the occupation, the government has granted its permission for the start of the new phase of work.

NGO spokesman Hagit Ofran, points out that new constructions will involve "the whole West Bank", without providing further details on the distribution. Today, he adds, authorities should issue additional permits to speed up the construction process.

Approximately 4,000 new housing units are to be built in the West Bank under the government's push. A plan aimed at the significant growth of settlements of Jewish settlers in Palestinian territories. On October 16, an Israeli committee approved permits for 31 colonies in Hebron. This is the first green light to construction in the most sensitive center of the West Bank since 2002. Several hundred Israeli settlers live in the heart of Hebron, under an impressive armed guard of the Israeli army. They are surrounded by about 200,000 Palestinians.

The new housing units in Hebron should arise around Shuhada Street; once home to an important street market, leading to a holy place where, according to tradition, the Biblical Abraham is buried. Today, the road is largely blocked to Palestinian access.

The United Nations and the vast majority of the international community consider all Israeli colonies in the West Bank and East Jerusalem to be illegal, according to international law. On 23 December, the UN Security Council adopted Resolution 2334, requesting the Israeli state to immediately and completely cease all settlement activities in the occupied Palestinian Territories, including East Jerusalem.

The peace talks broke up in 2014, triggering an escalation of violence in the face of which the international community's increasingly evident inertia (or impotence).

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