[E1 area] Plans submitted for 7,000 new Jewish settlement units in occupied West Bank

Middle East Monitor  /  February 25, 2023

Israeli occupation authorities have submitted plans to build 7,157 new Jewish settlement units in the E1 area that would bisect Palestinian contiguity in the occupied West Bank, Israeli media reported on Thursday.

This is part of the annexation pledges made by Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to his far-right partners in the government coalition.

According to The Times of Israel, the Civil Administration High Planning Subcommittee convened for the first time on Wednesday and Thursday since the establishment of the new government, advancing the plans for 7,157 new settlement units.

The plans include 5,257 homes in 35 settlements cleared through the earlier “deposit” planning stage, along with 1,900 homes that received final approval for construction.

The figure approved through those two stages this week, according to The Times of Israel, eclipsed the number of settlement units advanced in 2022 (4,427) and 2021 (3,645).

On Thursday, the Peace Now settlement watchdog accused the Israeli government of: “Destroying any chance for a political solution and peace.”

Peace Now described this measure as part of the planned annexation of the occupied Palestinian West Bank, stressing that this constitutes “apartheid.”

“This annexation government seems to continue to act according to a systematic plan that drags us into an apartheid reality,” criticized Peace Now.