Israel Okays More West Bank Homes


west-bank-constructionIsrael has given preliminary approval for the construction of more than 800 new homes in settlements on the  West Bank, an Israeli official has said.

Guy Inbar, the spokesman for Israel’s military-run Civil Administration in the West Bank, said on Thursday that initial plans to build 800 new settler homes were approved a day earlier. However, actual construction would require sign-off from the government.

“This is a lengthy process,” said Inbar, who did not immediately provide further details on the plans.

The number of new homes discussed by the Civil Administration on Wednesday is believed to be about 1,000 earmarked for 11 settlements.

Israeli expansion on the West Bank could complicate US-sponsored Israeli-Palestinian peace negotiations, which resumed last month.

Israeli radio said interior ministry figures showed that settler population in the West Bank had risen by 7,700 during the first six months of 2013. This represented a 2.1 percent rise in six months, compared to an annual population growth of two percent registered in Israel.

{ Israel News Bureau}