Israel Plans 3400 New Illegal Settlement Homes in West Bank

6 March 2024
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Amidst the ongoing genocide in Gaza, and despite international condemnation, the Israeli government has pushed forward plans for more than 3,400 new homes in settlements across the occupied West Bank.

Around 70% of these homes are slated for construction in Maale Adumim, located east of Jerusalem, with the remainder allocated for nearby areas such as Kedar and Efrat, situated south of Bethlehem. A government minister claimed it was in response to an incident where a settler died near Maale Adumim two weeks ago.

The plans have drawn condemnation from the Palestinian Authority, and much of the worlds leaders including high ranking politicians in the UK and USA. Since the 1967 war, Israel has illegally built over 160 settlements, placing 700,000 Jewish settlers in the West Bank and East Jerusalem – territories occupied by Israel to this day. All of these settlements are illegal under international law.

According to reports from Israel's Haaretz newspaper, the Higher Planning Committee of the Civil Administration, responsible for implementing Israeli government policies in the West Bank, greenlit the development of 3,476 settler homes. Finance Minister Bezalel Smotrich, overseeing the Civil Administration, emphasized a total of 18,515 homes in West Bank settlements have been approved over the past year, signaling a continued trend of expansion despite international condemnation.

The construction undermines the prospects for a two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict which is what the majority of world leaders are in favour of. The plans come as the genocide in Gaza has continued into Rafah, with even the US government now calling for a ceasefire.