Israel has announced plans to construct a total of 2,500 new settler units in the West Bank, once again defying international calls for the regime to stop its settlement activities on occupied Palestinian territories.
Israeli minister of military affairs, Avigdor Lieberman, tweeted on Thursday that he would request the Higher Planning Council next week to issue permits for building 2,500 new units in more than 30 West Bank settlements.
He also noted that 1,400 of the housing units would be designated for immediate construction.
“We will promote building in all of Judea and Samaria, from the north to south, in small communities and in large ones,” Lieberman said, using the Israeli term for the West Bank.
He further stressed that Israel had been keeping its word on the West Bank construction activities, saying, “In the coming months we will bring forward thousands more units for approval.”
The remarks came two days after the Palestinian foreign ministry called Israeli settlements “the single most dangerous threat to Palestinian lives and livelihoods.”
“Israel maintains, expands and protects the settlement regime by committing war crimes, crimes against humanity and the crime of apartheid against the Palestinian people,” the ministry said in a statement to the International Criminal Court (ICC).
About 600,000 Israelis live in over 230 settlements built illegally since the 1967 occupation of the Palestinian lands.
The Tel Aviv regime has been emboldened by the all-out support of Obama’s successor, Donald Trump, stepping up even further its settlement construction activities in the occupied territories in defiance of United Nations Security Council (UNSC) Resolution 2334.
The resolution, approved in December 2016, states that Israel’s establishment of “settlements in the Palestinian territory occupied since 1967, including East Jerusalem, has no legal validity and constitutes a flagrant violation under international law and a major obstacle to the achievement of the two-state solution and a just, lasting and comprehensive peace.”
Earlier this month, two-thirds of the 15 UNSC member states raised alarm over the non-implementation of Resolution 2334.