Netanyahu approves constructions of 5,000 new settlement units in West Bank
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has reportedly shown green light for construction of 5,000 settlement units in the occupied West Bank despite the international outcries against illegal grab of Palestinian lands and expansion of Israeli settlements.
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Palestinian Arabic-language Ma’an news agency, citing a report published by Israel’s Channel 7 media network, reported that the 70-year-old chairman of Likud political party had given the green light for plans to build over 5,000 units, after more than six months during which such construction had been frozen.
The report added that there have been contacts between settlement leaders and Netanyahu over the past few days, where Jewish extremists have called on the Israeli premier to end the freeze on settlement construction activities in the West Bank or face large-scale protests against his administration.
Israel and the UAE agreed to a US-brokered deal to normalize relations on August 13. Under the agreement, the Tel Aviv regime has supposedly agreed to "temporarily" suspend applying its own rule to further areas in the occupied West Bank and the strategic Jordan Valley that Netanyahu had pledged to annex.
While Emirati officials have described the normalization deal with the Tel Aviv regime as a successful means to stave off annexation and save the so-called two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, Israeli leaders have lined up to reject the bluff of Abu Dhabi's crown prince and de facto ruler of the UAE, Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, that Israel's annexation plans were off the table.
The Israeli prime minister has underlined that annexation is not off the table, but has simply been delayed.
Netanyahu signed agreements with Emirati Foreign Minister Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan and Bahrain's Foreign Minister Abdullatif Al Zayani during an official ceremony hosted by US President Donald Trump at the White House on September 15.
Palestinians, who seek an independent state in the occupied West Bank and Gaza with East Jerusalem as its capital, view the deals as betrayal of their cause.
Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas protested the normalization deals with Israel, saying they will be fruitless as long as the United States and the Israeli regime do not recognize the rights of the Palestinian nation and refuse to resolve the issue of Palestinian refugees.
More than 600,000 Israelis live in over 230 settlements built since the 1967 Israeli occupation of Palestinian territories of the West Bank and East Jerusalem al-Quds. All Israeli settlements are illegal under international law.
The UN Security Council has condemned Israel’s settlement activities in the occupied Palestinian territories in several resolutions.