More Settler Colonies

What is affected
Land Social/public
Land Private
Type of violation Dispossession/confiscation
Date 25 July 2008
Region MENA [ Middle East/North Africa ]
Country Palestine/Israel
Location Jordan Valley

Affected persons

Total 47000
Men 0
Women 0
Children 0
Proposed solution
Details Jordan Valley Israel to Build Yet More Settler Colonies.doc

Duty holder(s) /responsible party(ies)

Brief narrative

OCCUPIED JERUSALEM: Israel was set to construct housing units on an occupied area in the Jordan Valley, a senior official said on Thursday, in defiance of Palestinian and international calls to freeze such activity. Any decision to confiscate Arab land for Israeli colonization provokes outrage among the Palestinian population, who hold that such moves deprive them of scarce land on which to build their future state.

Thursday`s announcement, which runs counter to international law as well as previous Israeli pledges, also drew a negative reaction from the United Nations secretary general. We are currently in the process of constructing 20 housing units in the Jordan Valley settlement of Maskiot, a senior Israeli Defense Ministry official told AFP on condition of anonymity. Some 47,000 Palestinians live in the part of the valley that lies in the West Bank in about twenty permanent communities, among them the city of Jericho. Thousands of Bedouins also live. [B`tselem, Israel has de facto annexed the Jordan Valley in temporary communities (13 February 2006).

Original source

`New` settlement permits aren`t really new By Chaim Levinson, Ha`aretz, 7 October 2009 At the West Bank city of Ariel`s adventure park, whose construction Defense Minister Ehud Barak approved, nothing special was going on yesterday. Children were trying out the climbing wall and the mayor was walking around, proud as a groom on his wedding day. The facility was actually only approved yesterday, but has been in existence for a year and a half before receiving construction permits.

In fact, a demolition order was issued against it. Haaretz checked and discovered that these permits, are no more than another layer of permits on top of those already given, but that had not gone through for various reasons. In some places work was already underway. Haaretz has also learned that all construction permits were given on condition that the buildings go up within two months, or the permit will be rescinded.

The adventure park in Ariel is only one of the approvals Barak gave yesterday. The total number of new building starts approved yesterday in West Bank Jewish settlements is 455, mainly in the settlement blocs: 149 units in Har Gilo and 12 units in Alon Shvut - both in the Etzion Bloc, 84 units in Modi`in Ilit, 76 units in the Agan Ha`ayalot neighborhood of Givat Ze`ev, 89 units in Ma`aleh Adumim and 25 units in the nearby settlement of Kedar.

The construction of 20 new units was approved for Maskiot in the Jordan Valley, the only settlement not in one of the large settlement blocs. Barak also approved public projects, like the adventure park in Ariel and a new school in Har Adar. Yesterday, bulldozers were filling trucks with sand to level lot after lot in Har Gilo. The plan to add 234 units to the settlement, first established in 1968, was approved in 1999.

Former defense minister Shaul Mofaz approved the construction of 34 units, and during Olmert`s tenure 55 more units were approved. In 2008, Olmert approved another 149 units and Barak did not add to this number. Work had already begun, with Barak`s approval yesterday of the 149 units coming on top of Olmert`s earlier approval. Kedar has an approved plan from 1989 for the construction of 260 units. Two years ago, the community asked for permission to market another 34 units.

Approval came for 17, but it was not worthwhile for the local council to lay infrastructure for such a small number of units.

Yesterday, Barak approved 25 more units. In Alon Shvut, construction was approved in a neighborhood built 15 years ago in the center of the community. At the time, permits were issued for four buildings of 12 apartments each. For unknown reasons, only three were built.

For three years the local council has been seeking permission to build the fourth apartment house, which it has now rec

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