Israeli PM Netanyahu Announces Plan to Build 3,500 New Homes near Jerusalem
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has announced that he has taken steps to build 3,500 new homes on the West Bank, DPA reported.
"We are building up Jerusalem and the outskirts of Jerusalem. I gave an immediate directive, to deposit plans to build 3500 housing units in E1," the prime minister said.
The statement comes less than a week before the country's parliamentary elections.
The new homes are planned to be built in the E-1 undeveloped area between Jerusalem and the village of Ma’aleh Adumim, Israeli media reported. A spokeswoman for Netanyahu Likud's party confirmed that he had announced the news at a party event, but did not provide further details.
The E-1 zone is a particularly sensitive topic in Israeli-Palestinian relations because it will practically cut the West Bank in two. Intentions to build it in the past have provoked international outrage, including protests in Europe. Opponents of the plan say it threatens the territorial continuity of a possible future Palestinian state.
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