Palestinians condemn Israel’s plan to establish settlements near Jerusalem. Israeli-Palestinian conflict news

The Palestinian Authority asked the United States to intervene because Israel approved the construction of thousands of settlements in the occupied West Bank near Jerusalem.

Israel has tentatively approved a plan to expand Jerusalem’s municipal borders by building thousands of new illegal settlements on the occupied West Bank lands surrounding the city, which has caused Palestine to call for Washington to intervene.

On Wednesday, the Jerusalem city government gave the green light to a new eastern community on land located on the border of the West Bank, near the central Palestinian city of Ramallah. The site used to be the location of Qalandiya Airport, and the Israelis referred to it as Atarot.

The airport was closed after the outbreak of the second uprising in 2000 and was designated as a Palestinian tourist area in the Middle East plan of former US President Donald Trump. The area is sandwiched between the Palestinian Kafr Akab neighbourhood and Qalandiya refugee camp.

Aliyakin, the deputy mayor of Jerusalem, told Reuters that the plan requires more phases of approval and will build 3,000 houses, with a view to eventually adding another 6,000.

According to international law, Israeli settlements are considered illegal.

The two-state solution proposed in the 1993 Oslo Agreement envisaged East Jerusalem as the capital of the Palestinian state consisting of the West Bank and Gaza Strip. Israel claims that the entire city of Jerusalem is its indivisible capital.

The US-sponsored two-party peace talks stalled in 2014. Washington later recognized Jerusalem as the capital of Israel, but did not explicitly support its claim to the entire city.

The Palestinian Ministry of Foreign Affairs said in a statement: “This settlement plan aims to end the separation of Jerusalem from our outlying Palestinian areas… with a view to Israelizing, Judaizing and annexing it.”

It urged the United States and other major powers to “intervene immediately to stop these colonial projects and plans.”

The US Embassy in Jerusalem did not immediately comment.

Approximately 475,000 Israeli Jews live in settlements in the occupied West Bank.

Since 1967, the Israeli government has continued to expand Israeli settlements in the Occupied West Bank and Occupied East Jerusalem.

However, under the leadership of former Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, construction has accelerated in the past few years, and there has been significant prosperity during Trump’s US administration, which the Palestinians accused of serious pro-Israel prejudice.


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