Israel has started building around 600 settlement units in occupied East Jerusalem, while construction works continued in various other settlements in the city and the occupied West Bank.
Israeli weekly newspaper Kol Ha’er said that the Israeli company A. Aharon had successfully completed the marketing and sale of a new project in the settlement of Pisgat Zeev entitled ‘Nativ Hamzolot’, north of Jerusalem. The project includes four buildings each including six housing areas and a total of 24 settlement units.
The units are expected to be inhabited within 20 months. The same company marketed the ‘Novi Hapesga’ project in the same settlement that includes 22 units.
The company has also begun the project ‘Tovi Adumim’ in the settlement of Maaleh Adumim that includes 14 settlement units in two buildings. It will also begin a new settlement project in Gilo called ‘Medorgi Gilo’ with 88 settlement units in four buildings. In the Neve Yacov settlement, the company is building 165 settlement units.
More units are being marketed in Har Homa (Mountain Abu-Ghneim) settlement with 142 settlement units in three buildings. The company has recently won a tender for the construction of 92 settlement units in Pisgat Zeev.
A Palestinian daily newspaper reported that the Maltese government had criticised the new Israeli settlement projects in East Jerusalem.
A Palestinian newspaper reported a statement issued by the Palestinian exterior ministry explaining the Maltese position towards the continuous building of Israeli settlements. “Malta criticises the Israeli decision to build new settlement units,” the statement said.
It also said that building new settlements in the occupied Palestinian territories undermines the two-state solution and questions Israel’s real commitment to a peace process with the Palestinians.
Malta reiterated the position of the EU that Israeli settlements are illegal and pose an obstacle ahead of the peace talks. It also called for the Israeli occupation to call off the new settlement decisions.