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Israel plans to expand settlements fivefold in southern Nablus

US Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) (L) talks with Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) during a rally with fellow Democrats before voting on H.R. 1, or the People Act, on the East Steps of the US Capitol on March 08, 2019 in Washington, DC. (AFP photo)
The file photo shows the Shvut Rachel Israeli settlement in the occupied West Bank.

Israel plans to expand its settlements fivefold in the southern parts of Nablus in the occupied West Bank.

Ghassan Daghlas, a Palestinian Authority official who monitors settlement activity in the northern part of the West Bank, said on Sunday that the Tel Aviv regime had funded a plan to expand the Shvut Rachel settlement, the Palestinian Information Center reported.

He noted that the plan was to begin by adding 534 new housing units on the Palestinian land in Jalud and Turmusaya, south of Nablus.

Daghlas, who made the comments in a press statement, added that the approval of the new plan would enlarge the number of settler units to almost five times the current figure in the settlement that was established in 1991.

The regime is already under fire from the international community for its land expropriation policies.

According to documents approved by the so-called Supreme Planning Council of the Civil Administration on May 31 to expand Shvut Rachel, the construction would take place on an area estimated at 376 dunums of the lands of Jalud and Turmusaya, the Palestinian official added.

Shvut Rachel is located some 45 kilometers north of Jerusalem al-Quds.

Daghlas further said that the plan was aimed at changing the allocation of land from agricultural to residential areas, public and commercial institutions, open spaces, and engineering facilities.

More than 600,000 Israelis live in over 230 illegal settlements built since the 1967 Israeli occupation of the Palestinian territories of the West Bank and East Jerusalem al-Quds.

Israel has stepped up its settlement construction activities in defiance of United Nations Security Council Resolution 2334, which has pronounced the settlements in the West Bank and East Jerusalem al-Quds “a flagrant violation under international law.”

All Israeli settlements are illegal under international law. The UN Security Council has condemned Israel’s settlement activities in the occupied territories in several resolutions.

Palestinians want the West Bank as part of a future independent state with East Jerusalem al-Quds as its capital.

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