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Record rise in 2014 new West Bank settlements

24 February 2015 9:24

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An NGO has reported an unprecedented 40-percent climb in illegal settlement construction in the Israeli-occupied West Bank within the past year.

In its latest report on Monday, the Israel-based group Peace Now said the construction of 3,100 “residential units” began last year in the West Bank, while 4,485 tenders for construction were launched in East al-Quds (Jerusalem) settlement districts during 2014, “a record high for at least a decade.”

The report further underlines that 68 percent of the new construction is carried out in illegal settlements east of the outline proposed by the Geneva Initiative, drafted in 2003.

According to the NGO, the third administration of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu promoted “an average of 460 residential units [for Jews] per month,” mainly in isolated Zionist settlements, which is double the number advanced by the administration of his predecessor.

Out of the 3,100 settler units, whose construction began during 2014, 2,671 were permanent structures and 429 were caravans and light construction structures, the report added.

It further added that 165 public buildings such as schools and synagogues, and 92 industrial and agricultural structures were additionally built on the settlements.

The Israeli regime has faced widespread global condemnation over settlement constructions in the occupied Palestinian lands.

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.

Much of the international community regards the Israeli settlements as illegal because the territories were captured by Israel in the 1967 war and are hence subject to the Geneva Conventions, which forbids construction on the occupied lands.

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