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Seeking Settlers Votes, Netanyahu Invades Hebron

The National Bureau for Defending Land and Resisting Settlements said in his latest weekly report , that Israel Pre-Israeli elections, Netanyahu along with the head of the State of Israel, Rauf Rivlin, and the Speaker of the Knesset, Yuli Edelstein stormed the Ibrahimi Mosque to perform a Talmudic rituals on the 90th anniversary of the Buraq Revolution in 1929 in an attempt to win settler votes in the upcoming Israeli elections scheduled for Sep. 17th. Baruch Goldstein, the extremist settler, and mass murderer who perpetrated the 1994 Ibrahimi Mosque massacre in Hebron, killing 29 Palestinian muslim worshippers and wounding another 125. Moreover, Netanyahu confirmed that his government approved the plan of the Jewish Quarter in Hebron, adding, we will stay in Hebron forever, we are back to Hebron, we returned to synagogues and religious schools, we are back to the Ibrahimi Mosque, we will remain here for ever.

Netanyahu’s visit to the city was preceded by a 17 ministers and Knesset members’ letter to Netanyahu to allow constructing a Jewish neighborhood in the area of the abandoned Market Complex in Hebron. Moreover, the settlement group in Hebron prepared a petition signed by ministers and Knesset members, some of them Likud, to demand construction in the area to promote settlement. Furthermore, Hebron settlers called on  Netanyahu to take a decision of confiscating  the wholesale market, claiming that it is historically related to Jewish residents of Hebron, and that the Attorney General of the Israeli government issued an order 9 months ago stipulated that the Palestinian Municipality of Hebron must halt its sovereignty on the market.

On the other hand, Netanyahu visited “Alcana” settlement built on Salfeet’s land, vowed to annex all the settlements in West Bank and to impose Jewish sovereignty on them. Netanyahu reiterated that he’d not allow the evacuation of any settlements, and works hard to fortify settlement projects. Within the context of the Israeli elections, the leader of the “Blue White” coalition, Benny Gantz, said that he supports the orientation towards peace, but must keep the security of Israel by keeping the Jordan Valley and the settlement blocs in the West Bank under Israeli sovereignty, and stresses not to “return to the 1967 borders” as well as keeping Jerusalem united.  On the level of continued settlement projects, the Israeli occupation authorities approved a settlement plan in Salfeet Governorate, including the construction of a settlement road in the lands of Jinsafoot village, east of Qalqilya, thus confiscating 1000 of dunums, uprooting hundreds of olive trees and preventing communication between the lands.

In Jerusalem, the Israeli occupation authorities and their municipality seized approximately 85 dunums of Shu’fat lands to establish settlement roads that serve Ramat Shlomo settlement, knowing that the settlements have devastated vast areas of Shu’fat lands as part of a settlement plan that includes tunnel construction and bridges to enhance communication between the Jordan Valley settlements and settlements east of Jerusalem, in addition to the expansion of the industrial settlement of Atarot, north of Jerusalem.

In Bethlehem, settlers bulldozed agricultural land in Beit Jala town  after storming Al-Makhour area, erected a mobile caravan there. At the same time, the Israeli occupation authorities issued 3 military orders to seize land in Beit Jala, Tuqu ‘and Rashaida in Bethlehem Governorate in order to expand bypass road 60, which connects Jerusalem to Gush Etzion settlement complex. Moreover, the Israeli occupation authorities announced a major expansion of the Shilo settlement that was built on Qariot, Jalood and Turmosaia villages between Nablus and Ramallah.

On the other hand, the Israeli occupation authorities plan in coordination with the settlement movements, of which “Raghavim Movement” to establish an industrial zone on 788 dunums, extending from the city of Taybeh inside the 1948, to the “Ifni Hefts settlement” that was built on Palestinian land in Tulkarm, and the establishment of commercial areas and 130 factories. According to the data of the “Samaria Regional Settlement Council”, there are 95 plots of land dedicated to the industry, estimated to build about 130 factories on them.

Internationally, reactions continue to condemn Israel’s settlement activities and violations of human rights in the Palestinian territories occupied since 1967. The EU renewed its position through a statement issued by its representative to the Palestinian National Authority and in agreement with the heads of European missions in Jerusalem and Ramallah considering settlement policy and other measures taken in this context, such as forced deportations, evictions, demolitions and confiscation of homes are illegal under international law.

More than 103 Palestinian, regional and international organizations called on the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, Michelle Bachelet, to issue the UN database on settlement-related businesses in the occupied Palestinian territories. The signatory organizations expressed deep concern about the delay in issuing the database, including the names of companies that facilitate the establishment of Israeli settlements repeatedly. She pointed out that this delay comes after more than 2 years after the date of issuance in March 2017.

Source: The National Bureau for Defending Land and Resisting Settlements

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