Israel to build 8,300 Jewish settlements in the West Bank

In its weekly report, the Palestinian news agency stated that the annexation project's infrastructure is being implemented via "bypassing annexation" settlement units.

  • Israel has approved the construction of further illegal settlements in the West Bank.
  • The Palestinian villages of Al-Walaja and Beit Safafa are said to be affected by this move.

A view of the Palestinian village al-Walaja. (Middle East Eye/Chloé Benoist)

Israel has endorsed the construction of thousands of illegal settlement units in the occupied West Bank.

Illegal Israeli settler homes in the Palestinian village of Beit Safafa.

According to the Wafa news agency, the construction of 8,300 new colonial-settler units will be on Palestinian land extending from the Beit Safafa neighborhood to the Al-Walaja village south of Jerusalem.

A Palestinian boy watches an Israeli bulldozer clearing land for illegal settlements in the village of al-Walaja. (Ryan Rodrick Beiler / ActiveStills)

In its weekly report, the Palestinian news agency stated that the annexation project’s infrastructure is being implemented via “bypassing annexation” settlement units.

This, it explained, would turn the occupied West Bank into a “new Galilee” by 2045. The Palestinians would also be turned into a minority in the area.

The Palestinian village of Al-Walaja, West Bank. (Shy Halatzi / Wikipedia)

According to the PLO’s National Bureau for Defending Land and Resisting Settlements (NBPRS), various indicators on the ground show Israel is going ahead with its annexation plan.

“In Jerusalem and its environs, the occupation government aims to create a large settlement belt by constructing new settlement roads and streets,” the NBPRS said.

“The settlements are aimed at preventing any expansion or geographical contact of the people of Jerusalem from the south as part of the so-called ‘Jerusalem Envelope Belt,'” it added.

Palestinians walk along a road destroyed by Israel leading to the village of Al Walaja. (Musa Al Shaer / AFP)

Israeli authorities will pave a new road at the beginning of next year, linking the new settlement outpost of Mordot with the settlement of Gilo, south of occupied Jerusalem.

Therefore, the Palestinian residents of Al-Walaja, Beit Safafa, and the area south of Jerusalem will have their houses confiscated.

The construction scheme will involve building new settler towers up to 30 floors high, scheduled to begin by 2021, and expected to continue until 2040.

The Palestinian village of Beit Safafa. (Wikiwand)

The West Bank, including East Jerusalem, is regarded as “occupied territory” under international law, making Jewish-only settlements there illegal.

Israel occupied the West Bank, including East Jerusalem, and the Gaza Strip, during the 1967 Arab-Israeli war (Al-Naksa).

More than 450,000 Jewish settlers live in settlements in the territory, home to more than 2.8 million Palestinians.

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