Defense Minister Avigdor Liberman (L) and PM Benjamin Netanyahu. (Hadas Parush/Flash90) (Hadas Parush/Flash90)
Netanyahu Liberman

The back-to-back announcements of a total of 6,000 new housing units in Judea and Samaria within a single week is almost unprecedented.  

Israel announced on Tuesday the construction of 3,000 housing units in Judea and Samaria.

This announcement, made by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Minister of Defense Avigdor Liberman, follows last week’s statement regarding the construction of 2,500 housing units in various locations in Judea and Samaria and the municipality of Jerusalem’s approval of the construction of 566 new homes in the city.

“We are in a new era during which life in Judea and Samaria is returning to its proper and normal course, and we [the government] will provide the proper response to the needs and enable the ongoing life in the region,” Liberman stated.

The back-to-back announcements of a total of 6,000 new housing units in Judea and Samaria within a single week is almost unprecedented.

The statement comes as 42 Israeli families in the community of Amona in Samaria are being removed from their homes because it was allegedly built on privately-owned Palestinian land.

Tuesday’s announcement is perceived by many as a response to Amona.

Israel had refrained from construction and development in Jerusalem, Judea and Samaria for several years for fear of blowback from former President Barack Obama and his administration, which repeatedly criticized Israeli “settlement” activity.

Now that US President Donald Trump, who appears to be more supportive of Israel’s presence in these areas, has entered office, Israel is expected to push for massive development in its capital and in Judea and Samaria.

The Trump administration refrained from condemning Israel for last week’s construction announcement, a notable departure from the policies championed by the Obama administration, which repeatedly condemned Israel for building in its capital and in Judea and Samaria.

The Palestinians expressed shock over this development.

“We are building and will continue to do so,” Netanyahu stated.

By: Max Gelber, United with Israel

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