NABLUS (Ma’an) — Israeli settlers installed 29 mobiles homes in and near several illegal Israeli settlements in the Nablus and Tulkarem districts of the occupied West Bank, a Palestinian official told Ma’an on Saturday.
Ghassan Daghlas, a Palestinian official who monitors Israeli settlement activity in the northern West Bank, told Ma’an that Israeli settlers from the infamous Yitzhar settlement — known for its extremist Jewish residents — installed 11 mobile homes inside the settlement, located south of Burin village.
Another nine houses were erected by settlers near the village of Qusin in western Nablus, he added
Meanwhile, settlers from the Einav settlement in the eastern part of Tulkarem district erected nine homes near the border of the settlement, Daghlas said.
Daghlas told Ma’an that the mobile homes were erected by the settlers in just a few hours.
He called upon all international institutions and the Middle East Quartet to take a serious step against these settlement expansions.
A spokesperson for the Coordination of Government Activities in the Territories (COGAT), the Israeli agency responsible for implementing Israeli policies in the occupied Palestinian territory, was not immediately available to comment on the reports.
It remained unknown whether the settlers received permission from the Israeli government to erect the homes, or if they were unauthorized.
There are some 196 government recognized Israeli settlements scattered across the Palestinian territory, all considered illegal under international law, while hundreds of unauthorized Israeli settler outposts — considered illegal even under Israeli law — also dot the Palestinian landscape.
While Israel considers settler outposts to be illegal, earlier this year, Israel passed the outpost “Regularization law,”
which paved the way for the retroactive legalization of dozens of Israeli settler outposts, while loosening restrictions on settlers erecting outposts on private Palestinian land.
Meanwhile, in June, Israeli authorities broke ground
on the first official new Israeli settlement in 25 years amid fierce condemnation from the international community and rights groups.
Israel’s settlements on Palestinian territory have been routinely cited by world leaders and rights groups as one of the main impediments to peace in the region.