The Wall, another way for Land annexation
Expansion Plans at the Israeli Colonies

The Wall, another way for Land annexation <br> Expansion Plans at the Israeli Colonies


Israeli colonies in the northern parts of the West Bank are experiencing massive expansion efforts in terms of colonial housing units, new roads as well as new factories at the expense of Palestinian lands. The following table lists the expansion work currently taking place in the northern governorates:





Pal. Village.

No. of Colonists

Area in Dunums

Goal of Expansion




Masha, Azzoun Al Atma



Road network and new housing units


Shi'ar Bitkva


Masha. Azzoun Al Atma



Road network and new housing units


Al Kana


Masha, Al Zawiya



Road network and new housing units




Haris, Marda, Iskaka



New caravans and basic infrastructure for new factories




Haris Broqin, Sarata.



New colonial housing units


Burqan's industrial zone


Haris, Broqin, Sarata.


Construct 25 new factories.




Dier Istia



New colonial housing units




Azzoun Al Atma, Beit Amin, Sneiria



Road network and new housing units


Alfe Minshe


Kufr Thuluth, Jayyous



By-pass roads, new housing units




Northern Jordan Valkey



adding  tens of mobile caravans




North Jordan Valley



Adding tens of mobile caravans




Allaban Al Gharbiya



27 mobile caravans




Ya'bad, Barta'a, Arraba



Building additional factories.







New colonial housing units




Umm Al Rihan



New colonial housing units


Israeli occupation authorities have carried out a number of expansions in existing colonies in the occupied West Bank especially in its northern parts


A)   Salfeet Governorate:

The Colony of Ariel is experiencing continuous expansion:

The colony of Ariel (located atop lands expropriated from the Palestinian communities of Salfeet, Marda and Iskaka) is witnessing a high rate of expansion in the form of additional mobile caravans to face the increase in the number of colonists. Also, the colony is witnessing an increase in the construction of basic infrastructure, especially roads. The work frequency has increased ever since the ex-Prime Minister of Israel, Benjamin Netanyahu, declared the transformation of Ariel from a colony into an Israeli city with all the related privileges. As such, Israeli occupation authorities see it as only 'natural' expand to keep up with the needs of the population of the colony, both current and future.


Plowing of Palestinian lands in the vicinity of the colonies of Buqan and Ariel:

Israeli bulldozers are carrying out extensive plowing works in the hills surrounding and overlooking the factories of the colony of Burqan and Ariel Gardens (located west of the colony of Ariel). Up to the writing of this report about 170 dunums have been plowed near the colony of Burqan and about 80 dunums in the area surrounding the colony of Ariel. The plowed areas are owned by Palestinians from the villages of Haris, Broqeen and Sarta all located west of Salfeet Governorate.


Photo 1 :Alburqan Industrial Plants are expanding at the expense of Palestinian land in salfit


The confiscation of 40 dunums from the lands of the town of Dier Istiya for the benefit of the colony of Rafafa:

Israeli occupation forces are continuing the plowing works in the colony of Rafafa, located west of the governorate of Salfeet. The plowing process included more than 40 dunums of the lands of Dier Istiya for the purpose of adding new colonial housing units.


Photo 2: Expansion work in Rafafa Colony at the expense of Dir Istya Land

B) Qalqilia Governorate:



Expansion work in the colony of Atsfariem to accommodate more colonists:

 The so-called Local Council of the colony of Atsfariem (built atop confiscated lands from the villages of Masha, Azzun Al Atma and Siniria) started expansion work taking advantage of the location of the colony behind the Israeli Racist Wall. Tens of agricultural dunums belonging to the said villages have been plowed while infrastructure works have also started to build new colonial housing units. In case the current work is done, it would double the present size of the colony which only proves that the Israeli government was not truthful when declaring that the Wall was built for purely security reasons.


The establishment of a unified regional council containing a number of colonies and the construction of roads connecting between them:

Israeli media ahs reveled recently the existence of a plan drawn up by the Israeli Ministry of Housing calling for the establishment of a unified regional council that would include a number of colonies such as Orniet, Atsfariem, Shi'ar B'tekva as well as the colony of Alkana. The plan also calls for the connection between these colonies by a new network of roads as well as calling for tenders for the building of additional colonial housing units. In an effort to reach that goal, Israeli occupation bulldozers started in the early days of 2008 a massive plowing operation in the vicinity of the colony of Oraniet (built atop lands confiscated from the village of Azzun Al Atma). It seems that the plowing operation aims at the creation of a small new colony as to assure continuity between the colonies of Oraniet and Atsfariem. So far, about 110 dunums of Azzun Al Atma village that was filled with olive trees and crops have been plowed and land leveled. The village (population of 1900 and a total area of 8081 dunums) is surrounded by the Isolation Wall from three directions transforming, in the process, the lives of its inhabitants into an unbearable nightmare.



Photo 3 & Photo 4: Ornit Colony is expanding at expense of Azzoun Al 'atmah land.


C)  Tubas Governorate:

In February 2008 it was announced that a number of mobile caravans have been added to the colony of Maskiot in a step aimed at accommodating newly-arrived colonists at the expense of Palestinians in Wadi Al Maleh east of the governorate of Tubas. Additional expansions are expected in this colony especially after it was announced in June 2008 that additional dunums will be confiscated from Wadi Al Maleh for its benefit.


Moreover, occupation forces carried out massive expansion work in the colony of Mahola in the northern parts of the Jordan Valley for the purpose of adding tens of mobile caravans to accommodate increasing number of colonists. It is worth noting that occupation authorities provide special privileges and concessions for the colonists of the Jordan Valley that surpass those presented to other colonists in other areas in the West Bank. The goal behind this 'special treatment' is to encourage colonists to move into the Jordan Valley which Israel considers as its eastern boundary.



Photo 5: Vast areas of Wadi Al maleh land in Northern parts of the Jordan Valley Palestinian
were confiscated for the purpose of expanding Maskiot colony


D)  Ramallah Governorate:

The addition of 27 mobile caravans for the colony of Elie at the expense of the Palestinian village of Al Laban Al Gharbiya:

Colonists from the colony of Elie began in mid June 2008 laying ground for building a new colonial neighborhood made of 27 mobile caravans at the expenses of lands from the village of Al Laban Al Gharbiya, north of Ramallah Governorate. Despite the fact that most of the lands atop which the caravans will be placed are known to be private Palestinian property, Israeli occupation authorities are turning a blind eye to what the colonists are implementing on the ground. The colonists are taking advantage of the Wall being built in the targeted area to expand their colony.


E) Jenin Governorate:

The expansion of three colonies west of Jenin governorate:

Expansion work was concentrated in the colonies of Shakid, Hananit and Rihan in Jenin at the expense of the Palestinian villages of Umm Al Rihan, Ya'abad, Arraba and Barta'a. The total area of the lands under the jurisdiction of these colonies is 1531 dunums. All of these colonies are located behind the Wall. The expansion work included the plowing of tens of agricultural dunums belonging to the said villages for the purpose of establishing additional colonial housing units as well as creating additional factories associated with the Shakid Industrial Zone. It is worth noting here that Israeli occupation forces have been preventing Palestinian landowners from reaching the targeted lands since 2004 up until today under the pretext that it is a 'Closed Military Zone.'



The drive of expanding Israeli colonies at the expense of Palestinian lands and the policy of fait accompli are the practical translation of a racist ideology the main pillar of which is transferring the Palestinians out of their lands to establish a purely Jewish state.


We, in the Land Research Center, believe that the continuation of the Israeli activities in the West Bank (especially in the aftermath of the Annapolis Conference) forms a flagrant violation of all charters and covenants and resolutions of international legitimacy and an assault, both formal and informal, on Palestinian human rights.


As we hold the occupation government responsible for the consequences of the violations, we call upon the international community to intervene immediately to stop this violation and aggression and provide international protection for the Palestinian people and property living under the Israeli occupation.





Prepared by:
The Land Research Center



Categories: Settlement Expansion