New Peace Now report: Over 800 additional housing units promoted as part of the 2nd prisoner release


Following the second Palestinian prisoner release Settlement Watch revealed the plans for and the promotion of housing units in the West Bank settlements.

Following the initial publications of plans and promotions, 832 additional housing units were promoted, either for validation or for depositing, by the Civil Administration's subcommittee for settlements. The promotion of these 832 additional units did not receive public attention, until Haaretz newspaper published an article about this issue yesterday.

To this day, in total 1788 housing units in the West Bank settlements and 1531 housing units in East Jerusalem were promoted by the Civil Administration as part of the 2nd prisoner release. In addition, tenders were issued for 1033 housing units in the West Bank settlements and 1225 housing units in East Jerusalem.

Despite getting public attention only yesterday, the promotion of these 832 additional housing units should be considered as part of the 2nd prisoner release since the decision to promote them was made on November 3rd, just days after the prisoner release. Furthermore, the settlements for which these 832 units are planned for were mentioned by MK Ofir Akunis (Likud) during his presentation to the Knesset about the plans that would be promoted during the prisoner release.

These promotions have dangerous implications, the fact they are part of the prisoner release, does not reduce their danger level. For example, the promotions include 256 housing units for Nofei Prat, a small and isolated settlement north east of Ma'ale Adumim. The addition of 256 units would be a likely growth of over 1000 settlers. This is a significant expansion for a settlement which today is estimated less as than 500 people.

Similarly, 125 housing units (of which 30 are for future planning) were approved for Giva't Salit. Giva't Salit was established in early 2002 as an outpost. In 2012 the Israeli government legalised Givat Salit as a neighbourhood of Mehola. This current promotion is part of the process of legalising a plan for the new neighbourhood. An additional 125 housing units could be as many as 600 new settlers to Giva't Salit. Currently, Peace Now estimates that there are less than 50 residents in Giva't Salit.

The subcommittee also promoted 409 housing units, in two different plans for Agan Hayalot neighbourhood of the Givat Ze'ev settlement. This neighbourhood, which is built for the ultra-orthodox community has dramatically increased the size of the built up area of Givat Ze'ev settlement.

Finally, 2 more plans were approved in isolated and ideological settlements: 30 housing units for Shilo, and 12 housing units for Nokdim. Of the 30 housing units that were approved for Shilo, 19 have already been built illegally. The plan thus retroactively legalises this construction. Likewise, the 12 housing units at Nokdim are already established, thus the plan retroactively legalizes them as well.

Details of the plans:

Approved for validation:

Nofei Prat - plan 227/10/2 - 256 housing units
Shilo - plan 205/12 - 30 housing units
Approved for depositing:

Givaat Ze'ev, Agan Hayalot neighborhood - plan 220/10/7 - 28 housing units
Givaat Ze'ev, Agan Hayalot neighbourhood - plan 220/23 - 381 housing units
Giva'at Salit, Mehola, plan 301/2 - 125 housing units (of which 30 are for future planning)
Nokdim, plan 411/8 - 12 housing units (legalising already established building)
Summary of total tenders and plans that were promoted as part of the 2nd prisoner release:

(including the 832 housing units)