Home News Israel points tenders for two,500 new settler properties: Watchdog

Israel points tenders for two,500 new settler properties: Watchdog

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Peace Now mentioned PM Netanyahu declares settler properties in occupied West Financial institution and East Jerusalem as he faces elections in March.

Israel has issued tenders for two,500 new settler properties within the occupied West Financial institution and East Jerusalem, a watchdog mentioned on Wednesday, on the eve of Joe Biden’s swearing-in as US president.

On Sunday, Israel accredited 780 new settler properties within the West Financial institution forward of March elections, by which Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is anticipated to face a fierce problem from right-wing and pro-settler candidate Gideon Saar.

Peace Now mentioned the federal government had now revealed tenders for an extra 2,112 items within the occupied West Financial institution and 460 in occupied East Jerusalem, the japanese a part of the town annexed by Israel however which the Palestinian Authority hopes to make the capital of a future state.

The watchdog accused the federal government of a “mad scramble to advertise as a lot settlement exercise as doable till the final minutes earlier than the change of the administration in Washington”.

“By doing so, Netanyahu is signalling to the incoming president that he has no intention of giving the brand new chapter in US-Israel relations even at some point of grace, nor critical thought to tips on how to plausibly resolve our battle with the Palestinians,” it mentioned in a press release.

Palestinian demonstrators put together to launch balloons throughout a protest in opposition to US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo’s go to, close to the Israeli settlement of Psagot within the Israeli-occupied West Financial institution final November [File: Mohamad Torokman/Reuters]

The spokesman for Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas has condemned the choice to construct new settlement items and mentioned the Israeli authorities is racing in opposition to time to get rid of what stays of any risk of a two-state resolution.

“The continuation of Netanyahu’s authorities with its settlement coverage and theft of Palestinian land – with the assist and bias of the present US administration – won’t carry safety and stability,” Nabil Abu Rudeineh mentioned in a press release.

All Jewish settlements within the West Financial institution are considered unlawful underneath worldwide legislation and by a lot of the worldwide group.

However the Trump administration, breaking with many years of US coverage, declared in late 2019 that Washington now not thought-about settlements as being in breach of worldwide legislation.

Biden has indicated that his administration will restore Washington’s pre-Trump coverage of opposing settlement enlargement.

However on Tuesday, his nominee for secretary of state mentioned the incoming administration won’t reverse Trump’s landmark recognition of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital.

“The one approach to make sure Israel’s future as a Jewish, democratic state and to present the Palestinians a state to which they’re entitled is thru the so-called two-state resolution,” Antony Blinken mentioned.

Electioneering

Past the change in Washington, DC, consultants say Netanyahu additionally has home political causes for pushing settlement enlargement.

Electioneering is intensifying forward of Israel’s March 23 polls, by which Netanyahu is anticipated to face a problem from right-wing candidate Gideon Saar, a defector from the prime minister’s right-wing Likud social gathering.

Saar, a outstanding pro-settler voice, cut up with Likud late final yr to problem Netanyahu, Israel’s longest-serving prime minister.

Israel has occupied the West Financial institution because the 1967 Six-Day Struggle and has more and more expanded the dimensions and variety of settlements there, notably underneath Netanyahu’s management since 2009.

There are at present some 450,000 Jewish settlers dwelling within the occupied West Financial institution amid an estimated 2.8 million Palestinians.

In occupied East Jerusalem, some 200,000 Jewish settlers dwell on Palestinian land in 12 settlements.

Governments worldwide largely see settlements as an impediment to a two-state resolution to the Israeli-Palestinian battle.