A tender for 1077 units in the highly sensitive Givat Hamatos settlement area in southern Jerusalem was published this afternoon, on 24 February 2020. The bid will open on 3 May and close on 22 June. Therefore, there is still time until late June to annul this tender and to prevent a move that could hamper the very two-state solution. If Givat Hamatos is built it would entrap the Palestinian Jerusalem neighborhood of Beit Safafa and, along with the Har Homa settlement, sever the territorial contiguity of the Jerusalem-Bethlehem metropolitan area.
For more on the ramifications of building the settlement of Givat Hamatos and the recent events surrounding it, see the update from 20 February 2020.
Peace Now: “Construction in Givat Hamatos is a serious blow to the two-state solution. This is the last point enabling territorial continuity between Bethlehem and East Jerusalem. The current caretaker government has no mandate to take such a far-reaching policy change. Netanyahu and Trump claim to have advanced a “peace plan,” but Netanyahu’s actions, including promoting this expansion, prove that he is doing everything to prevent peace and a resolution to the conflict.”
The Higher Planning Council of the Civil Administration will convene this Thursday (27 February 2020) to approve 12 plans in 11 settlements, with at least 1148 units, most of them deep in the West Bank (in areas that should be part of the future Palestinian state according to the Geneva Initiative proposed border).
Establishment of a new Industrial Area, “Sha’ar Hashomron” (which is another kind of a settlement), close to Green Line, east of Salfit and South of Qalqilya (near the planned Nahal Rabah cemetery).
Plan to legalize hundreds of units built illegally in Eli settlement, and to allow new units to be built (620 units in total). The plan was stopped by the High Court following a petition by Palestinian land owners and Yesh-Din and Bimkom. Last week, the High Court allowed the approval of most of the planned units.
The plans to be discussed at the HPC on Thursday 27/2/20 are:
|Maaleh Shomron||116/4||No Info*|
|Shaar Hashomron IA||192||Industry||New Industrial Area West of Salfit (south of Qalqilya)|
|Immanuel||120/6/3||0||Probably changes in plans without adding housing units|
|Eli||237||620||Legalization of many units built illegally.|
|Shvut Rachel||205/2/2||204||Was discussed and approved for deposit on 6/1/20, maybe there was a need to re-discuss from some reason|
|Kfar Eldad||411/6/1/4||105||Officially part of Nokdim settlement|
|Alon Shvut||405/7/3||No Info*|
|Karnei Shomron||117/8/1/3/5||24||Adding 24 units to the 12 approved (total 36 units)|
|Efrat||410/5/76||4||Adding 4 units to the 12 approved (total 16 units)|
|Givat Zeev||220/10/17||35||Adding 35 units to the 40 approved (total 75 units)|
* The published agenda does not specify the number of units in the plan, this will probably become clear at the hearing on Thursday.