West Bank, ALRAY - Palestinians have staged a protest rally in the occupied West Bank to condemn the Israeli settlement building in the occupied Palestinian territories.
The demonstrators on Monday marched into the settlement of Ma'ale Adumim, which is considered one of the largest Israeli settlements.
Israeli forces were deployed to break up the protest while the troops fired rubber bullets and tear gas to disperse the protesters, while making several arrests.
Israeli Daily Ha’aretz reported that Tel Aviv gave the green light to the construction of about 830 new settler units on Sunday.
The new units include 409 in the settlement of Givat Ze’ev, located north of East Jerusalem.
Thirty units will be constructed in the settlement of Shiloh and the rest will be built at the Nofei Prat outpost in the settlement of Kfar Adumim.
The new plan comes less than two weeks after Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu decided to suspend plans to build 24,000 more homes in the West Bank and Jerusalem.
The presence and continued expansion of Israeli settlements in occupied Palestine has created a major obstacle for the efforts made to establish peace in the Middle East.
More than half a million Israelis live in over 120 illegal settlements built since Israel’s occupation of the Palestinian territories of the West Bank in 1967.
The United Nations and most countries regard the Israeli settlements as illegal because the territories were captured by Israel in a war in 1967 and are hence subject to the Geneva Conventions, which forbid construction on occupied lands.
On November 19, UN Under-Secretary-General for Political Affairs Jeffrey Feltman told the Security Council that the talks between Israelis and Palestinians suffered “a significant setback” as a result of a series of recent Israeli announcements of settlement plans in the West Bank and Jerusalem.