Israel starts largest illegal settlement project in West Bank

Israel starts largest illegal settlement project in West Bank
Mon Apr 14, 2014 08:29:54

The Israeli regime has grabbed more Palestinian lands in the occupied West Bank in a bid to complicate efforts to extend the so-called peace talks with the Palestinian Authority.

Reports on Sunday said that the Israeli ministry of military affairs has declared nearly 100 hectares of territories in the Gush Etzion bloc, south of East al-Quds, as its property.

According to the reports, the land confiscation is the largest in years and could eventually lead to the expansion of several settlements. 

The land is considered as an inalienable part of Palestine.

Hanan Ashrawi, a senior member of the Palestine Liberation Organization, reacted to the move, saying the Tel Aviv regime of destroyed chances for peace through a "frantic escalation" of settlement activity.

Israel is “hostile to peace moves and it's taking steps which have a longer-term strategy,” she said.

Last Palestinian-Israeli talks broke down in September 2010, after Tel Aviv refused to freeze its settlement activities in the occupied West Bank.

Palestinians seek to create an independent state on the territories of the West Bank, East al-Quds, and the besieged Gaza Strip and are demanding that Israel withdraw from the occupied Palestinian territories.

The presence and continued expansion of Israeli settlements in the occupied Palestine has created a major obstacle for the efforts to establish peace in the Middle East.

More than half a million Israelis live in over 120 illegal settlements built since Israel’s occupation of the Palestinian territories of the West Bank and East al-Quds in 1967.

The United Nations and most countries regard the Israeli settlements as illegal because the territories were captured by Israel in a war in 1967 and are hence subject to the Geneva Conventions, which forbid construction on occupied lands.

Israel has defied demands by the international community to stop construction of new settlements in West Bank and East al-Quds.


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