Regardless of the claims that the new housing units would be delayed until after US Secretary of State Kerry's visit, Peace Now has just revealed 272 housing units were approved for validation yesterday (5/1/14).
The plans are for 250 units in the settlement of Ofra and 22 units in the settlement Karnei Shomron. These plans
were published for validation online by the Civil Administration's Subcommittee for Settlements.
Both settlements are isolated, located deep in the West Bank and under no circumstance will remain under Israeli sovereignty within a two-state solution peace agreement.
"With Kerry still in the region, preparing to present a framework agreement, Prime Minister Netanyahu's government has once again exemplified its obsession with building in the settlements.
A government that is seeking a two state solution would not further entrench the conflict by building in the settlements, and especially in settlements that have no chance to remain under Israeli sovereignty."
The plan for Ofra (plan 221/6) intends to allow new construction, as well as, retroactively authorizes already completed illegal construction. Of the 250 housing units within the new plan, 197 housing units are new units, 53 units have already been established without permits. Ofra is located deep in the West Bank, just east of Ramallah and adjacent to the Palestinian villages of Silwad and Ein Yabrud.
The plan for Karnei Shomron (plan 117/13), known as the "entrance neighborhood" is for 22 new housing units. The settlement is built more than 12 kilometers east of the Green Line and from the Palestinian city of Qalqiliya. It is in the north of the West Bank, adjacent to Palestinian village Kafr Laquif.
We expect their publication in the local newspapers in the next few days, after which 15 days from then the plans will be approved. This is the final stage of the planning process and construction could begin shortly.