More than 1,329 Settlement Housing Units will be Approved Next Week

Today, the agenda was published for a meeting of the Civil Administrations’ Higher Council for Planning and Instruction, which will be held next Wednesday, 10 January 2018. The committee is expected to approve the promotion of at least 1,329 housing units in the settlements, of which two-thirds (883 housing units) will be located in isolated settlements that Israel would probably have to evacuate under any two-state agreement.

A total of 361 housing units will receive approval for validation, while another 986 will be approved for deposit (for details of the various planning stages, click here). Additionally, the media reported that the Defense Minister authorized the marketing of several hundred housing units, at least 430 of which in Ariel. As a result, tenders for settlement construction are expected to be published in the coming weeks. It should be noted that only 13 settlements require approval for marketing (for tenders) administered by the Ministry of Housing, and it only comes after a plan for construction has already been approved and is in effect. All other settlements can build without tenders.

For a list of the full programs to be discussed in the committee, click here.

Peace Now: “The government continues to act irresponsibly by promoting settlement construction, including in areas that Israel will have to evacuate under a final status agreement. Since U.S. President Donald Trump took office, the Israeli government has abandoned all restraint and is doing everything in its power to destroy the chances for a two-state solution.”

Programs worth mentioning

A plan for the “temporary” approval of 11 structures in the Nativ Ha’Avot outpost, which are located at least partially on private Palestinian land (Zoning No. 404/1/6/6) – Following the Palestinian landowners’ petition with Peace Now against the construction of the Nativ Ha’Avot outpost, the High Court of Justice ruled that the state must evacuate 17 buildings that were built fully or partially on private land by 6 March 2018.

Later, some residents of the outpost asked the Court to allow them to saw off parts of their houses that were built on private land; however, the Court rejected their request. The settlers are now preparing a plan for building permits for the houses to be partially sawed off, so that it will be possible to circumvent the demand of the Court, and that in light of the new plan the Court’s decision will need to change.

Peace Now: “It is disgraceful that the planning institutions permit such a “plan” to be brought up for discussion. This is not a planning solution, but rather a planning disgrace that violates a clear order from the High Court.”

Additional Programs

Expansion of the Alon settlement by 289 housing units, some kilometers northeast of Ma’ale Adumim and Jerusalem. This plan will double the size of the settlement.

A plan for the addition of 120 housing units in Karmei Tzur (north of Hebron and Halhul). The 91-dunam plan is intended to expand the settlement, although the precise status of the land for this intended construction is not yet clear.

A plan for dozens of housing units in the settlement of Ateret (north of Ramallah) on land purchased by Al-Watan, owned by the Amana organization. Previous legal action against Al-Watan proved that most of its purchases were based on forged documents.