Israeli settlement expansion in Ramallah signals isolating Palestinian towns

12:00 Sep 4 2011 'Abud

OCCUPIED JERUSALEM, (PIC)-- The Israeli ministry of war has signed a contract with the municipality of Beit Arye settlement in Ramallah governorate in the West Bank to construct an additional 100 units to the settlement, the Israeli Peace Now organization has reported.

Beit Arye was erected on land that belonged to the nearby Palestinian village of Abud.

Also included in the agreement were plans to complete a bypass road connecting the settlement with another settlement to the south, Ofarim. It further stipulated that expansion would be made to the settlement according to a planned route of the separation barrier around the settlement.

The report says that should Israel decide to complete construction of the portion of the barrier there that was initially planned to include the road and settlement expansion, it would permanently isolate Palestinian localities from one another.

Israel stopped building that portion of the barrier after Palestinians in neighboring Al-Lubban al-Gharbiya village filed petitions that it was cutting into their privately owned land. The barrier was then re-planned along a separate track, but its building was once again stopped because it was planned in the same place where Jewish settlers had plans to build houses.

According to the new deal, those settlers would be compensated and building of the bypass would continue.
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