The Policy of Israelizing East Jerusalem

The Policy of Israelizing East Jerusalem

On February 12, 2008, the daily Israeli newspaper 'Haaretz' published that the Israeli Municipality of Jerusalem will move forward with its plans to build more than 10,000 new Israeli-Jewish housing units in the Illegal Israeli settlements of East Jerusalem .


Deliberate Israeli Manipulation

Mr. Dov Gal, the deputy director of the Ministry's Jerusalem District, stated that there is no Israeli decision to halt the construction in East Jerusalem settlements. He also added that he had been ordered to freeze construction in the settlements only around the city of Jerusalem including Gush Etzion, Giv'at Ze'ev, Adam, and Bitar 'Illit settlements.


In an interview with the Israeli daily newspaper Haaretz, the Israeli Minister of Construction and Housing Ze'ev Boim indicated that bids will go out soon to build 1,100 new housing units in East Jerusalem in addition to 370 in Har Homa settlement, 750 units in Pisgat Ze'ev settlement north of the city. The Minister provided that 'What people call delays are in fact final stages of coordination with the city hall'.


The proclamation of the Israeli Minister was not far off the Israeli Prime Minster Office issued statement, which indicated that the construction in East Jerusalem settlements has not been frozen, but because of 'diplomatic sensitivity' circumstances; the Prime Minister has asked to be informed of all building plans taking place in the city, so that he will not be taken by surprise.


Yair Ma'ayan, the managing director of the Israeli municipality of Jerusalem told Haaretz that the city is moving forward with its plans to build more than 10,000 new housing units in East Jerusalem including the Illegal Israeli settlements of: Ramot, Ramot Shlomo, Pisgat Ze'ev, Neve Yachov, East Talpiot, Har Homa and Gilo, and the largest expansion will took place in the settlement of Giv'at Hamatos where 4,000 housing units planned to be build there.


One thing seems to be for sure, and that is the Israelis are sending mix message about the construction status with regard to Israeli settlements in East Jerusalem . Apparently, s intention is to mislead the International community with regard to their real intentions of the whole settlements' issue in East Jerusalem , it is much dragging and manipulation than acting and conforming to the well of the international community and abiding by what was agreed upon. The provoking and defiant announcements of Israel with regard to declaration of expansion plans, issuance of tenders for units with particular emphasis in East Jerusalem settlements after Annapolis Peace Summit which took place in the United States in November 26, 2007 is clear indication that Israel intention to comply to what was agreed upon ever-existed. See Map 1


Unfortunately, the Israeli colonial activities which carried out by the Israeli occupation in and around the city of Jerusalem after Annapolice had reached unprecedented levels, where the Israeli authorities declared new plans to build   31,990 housing units in the city of Jerusalem in the near future. See Table 1 


Table 1: Tenders Issued to build in the Israeli settlements in Jerusalem After Annapolis


Date of declaration


No. Housing Units





Har Homa



Jabal Al- Mukabir



'Ein Yael






Har Homa & Ma'ale Adumim



East Talpiot



Ras Al-'Amoud




Pisgat Ze'ev, Har Homa, Neve Yachov, Ramot, Gilo



Al-Sheikh Jarrah



Giv'at Hamatos



Har Homa



Pisgat Ze'ev




Source: ARIJ Monthly Reports – 2008


The Illegal Israeli Settlements of East Jerusalem

in accordance to such plans, Jerusalem holds at the day of this report 33 Illegal Israeli settlements in Jerusalem Governorate that occupy an area of 39873 dunums (11.2 % of the total Governorate area) with an estimated 250+ thousands Israeli settlers, in addition to 18 Illegal Israeli outposts.


Moreover, Jerusalem was among the Palestinian Governorates which was dramatically affected by building the Illegal Israeli Apartheid Segregation Wall, which will isolate more than 152 thousand dunums completely  from the rest of the West bank territory and annex it toward the Israeli side. Moreover, the 132 kilometers Wall will segregate more than 100 thousand, which as mentioned earlier, alter the demographic status of the city, making the city's Jewish resident a majority within the existing population.


The  coerced reality of the Israeli settlements in the West Bank, including East Jerusalem and the relentless expansions carried out are Illegal and contradicts with the international law and rules, of which the United Nations Security Council Resolutions such as 237 (1967), 271 (1969), 446 (1979),  452 (1979),  465 (1980).


 Resolution 446 March 22, 1979 calls on Israel 'to rescind its previous measures and to desist from taking any action which would result in changing the legal status and geographical nature and materially affecting the demographic composition of the Arab territories occupied since 1967, including Jerusalem and, in particular, not to transfer parts of its own civilian population into the occupied Arab territories.


Also the resolution 452 of the 1979 'calls upon the Government and people of Israel to cease, on an urgent basis, the establishment, construction and planning of settlements in the Arab territories occupied since 1967, including Jerusalem.'


Furthermore the Forth Geneva Convention also states in Article 49 that 'The occupying power shall not deport or transfer parts of its own population into the territories it occupies.'


In May 2001, the head of the International Red Cross delegation to Israel and the Occupied Territories said that settlements are 'equal in principle to war crimes'. (Note: 'The transfer, the installation of population of the occupying power into the occupied territories is considered as an illegal move and qualified as a 'grave breach.' It's a grave breach, formally speaking, but grave breaches are equal in principle to war crimes', Rene Kosirnik, head of the ICRC delegation to Israel and the OPT, press conference 17 May 2001.) .)




Prepared by 
The Applied Reserach Institute – Jerusalem

Categories: Settlement Expansion