A de-facto Palestine is being created outside of any official negotiations between Israel and the Palestinian Authority
Campaign4Truth - “It [Rawabi] would be a planned community ……[that will] contain enough housing for up to 40,000 Palestinians and Israeli Arabs.”
Rawabi, a state of the art new town being developed north of Jerusalem, is only one of several Arab settlements planned that will increase the Arab population in the northern aspects of Judea and Samaria. Creating these “affordable homes” for tens of thousands of would be residents will bring an increased Arab population into these areas, altering the existing demographics. According to The Globe and Mail, “It [Rawabi] would be a planned community ……[that will] contain enough housing for up to 40,000 Palestinians and Israeli Arabs.” Whilst the Arab Palestinian population will be growing, the Jewish Israeli population will remain static as a result of UNSC (United Nations Security Council) Resolution 2334 that prohibits the building of Jewish settlements.
Whilst UNSC 2334 prohibits any further Israeli settlement building, it fails to identify this ongoing Arab settlement programme. Israel has been admonished for building on land the international community claims is occupied, yet this Arab settlement programme is being funded by foreign entities like Qatar. Although funding is largely Qatari, 15% is owned by what is termed “other shareholders”. Furthermore, the UK ‘Action Tank’, The Portland Trust that has offices in London, Tel Aviv and Ramallah, is instrumental in designing and coordinating the programme together with other local and international organisations.
The project is fronted by the entrepreneur Bashir Masri, an American Palestinian who has built similar projects in Morocco. Some locals are also involved like Samir Hulileh of the PA cabinet office who used to be CEO of Portland Ramallah and who is or has been ubiquitously involved in everything “Pal” like PEX, PALTEL and PADICO, but foreign involvement in Arab settlement building is clearly evident. According to the Globe and Mail, Bashir Masri is building to make money, but at the same time he sees this as the next stage in the battle with Israel, shifting from ‘bullets to bricks’ as the ‘battle of the hilltops’ expands.
In effect what is transpiring is the next stage of this battle for the holy land, the battle of bricks as a weapon of delegitimisation of Israel. Arab hilltop settlement building, aided by foreign entities, is designed to bring an increased Arab population into the region thus establishing as fact the Arab demand of a right of return, whilst at the same time the international community is suppressing expansion of the Jewish presence in the region.
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