“Welcoming Barak Obama on the Israeli way”

“Welcoming Barak Obama on the Israeli way”


As the President of the United States of America, Barak Obama, is willing to visit Israel and the occupied Palestinian territory (oPt) next month (March 20, 2012), the Israeli settlements expansion in the occupied West Bank is thriving, where on the 11th of February, 2013 the Israeli Defense Minister, Ehud Barak, approved the construction of 90 settlement units in the illegal settlement of Beit Il to the north of Ramallah Governorate. The newly announced settlement units are part of an overall plan for building 300 settlement units in the aforementioned settlement (Bit Il) which the Israeli Government promised last year (in June 2012) to build for Israeli settlers of Giv’at HaUlpana settlement outpost. Additionally, this plan is being implemented by the Israeli Civil Administration as part of a compensation plan for the evacuation of the illegal outpost Giv’at HaUlpana[1] which was declared eight months ago by the Israeli Prime MInister, Benjamin Netanyahu [2].


It is important to note that Giv’at HaUlpana outpost was classified as illegal by the Israeli High court of Justice, based on a ruling that the 30 housing units (5 Buildings) comprising the outpost were built on privately owned Palestinian lands of Ein Yabroud village in Ramallah Governorate. Moreover, the Giv’at HaUlpana outpost was among the outposts considered illegal according to ‘Sasson’ report[3] of 2005 and accordingly must be dismantled. Sasson said in her report, ‘there is no legal difference between the 71 outposts[4] that went up before March 2001 and the 24 established after that date. They are all illegal. It is important to emphasize that it’s not merely to evacuate the outposts but to cease the entire procedure of budgeting and transferring state funds to the outposts. The very heart of the report is about the enforcement of the law, which is not a political issue, but a legal one, of tremendous importance for a democratic state.’[5] 


On the ground, the Israeli Government attempts to reconstruct and relocate the aforementioned outpost (Giv’at HaUlpana) inside the illegal Israeli settlement of ‘Beit Il’, to become part of it, by giving the green light for the first 90 settlement units (out of the total plan – 300 units) , which is just another malicious policy by the Israeli occupation in order to manipulate and circumvent the international community by legitimizing the illegal outpost (Giv’at HaUlpana) through annexing it to its ‘Mother’ settlement Beit Il, which is also Illegal according to Internal laws and Human Conventions.  See Figure 1




The case of Giv’at HaUlpana outpost is not the first of its kind in the occupied Palestinian Territory, where just last year, on April 17, 2012 the Israeli Prime Minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, approved plans to legalize three illegal settlements in the West Bank after receiving recommendations approved by the Defense Minister Ehud Barak to formalize the status of Bruchin, Rechalim and Sensana settlements in the West Bank,  and according to which, Netanyahu proposed for Bruchin settlement (Nablus Governorate) to be part of Eli Zahav settlement (2 km apart) while Rechalim settlement (Nablus Governorate) to be part of Kfar Taphuh settlement (1.5 km distance apart) and Sensana settlement (Hebron) to be part of Eshkelot settlement (2.5 km distance apart). Click here for more details


A Glance about Beit Il Settlement


The Israeli settlement ‘Beit Il’ was established in 1977 over lands confiscated from Dura Al Qar’, Ein Yabrud and Al Bireh communities in the northern Ramallah Governorate. It is considered one of the main strategic and crucial settlements in the West Bank to the Israeli government, where it is located in the Israeli corridors areas which Israel seeks to control since it constitutes a geographical link between the settlements in the east (the Jordan Valley Area â�� the Eastern Segregation Zone) and those in west (in the western Segregation Zone[6]). Moreover, the settlement has an approximate population of 5,300 Israeli settlers and occupies a total land area of 1,056 dunums. Table No.1 below gives more details of Beit Il settlement


Table No.1: Detail of the illegal settlement Beit Il In Ramallah Governorate

Settlement Name


Confiscated Lands (Dunums)



Beit Il




Source: The Geo-Informatics Department, ARIJ – 2013


The Construction of the 90 housing units in Beit Il, and its implications on neighboring the Palestinian communities.


The expansion of Beit Il settlement as one located in the Israeli corridors area, gives Israel a strategic and important advantage to impose its control over the Israeli settlements in that area such as (Ofra, Pesagot, kokhav Ya’acov (Abir Ya’acov), Sha’ar Benyamin and the settlement of Beit Il) so that it will not relinquish these settlements in the framework of a final agreement with the Palestinians and annexes as many settlements and outposts as possible to its proper. This policy gives Israel the chance to impose bitter facts on the ground by making its withdrawal from these settlements impossible in the future. Map 1 shows the Israeli settlement of Beit Il and its location within the Israeli corridors area,





To conclude


The Israeli government is trying to send a strong letter to the U.S President, Barak Obama before his visit to Israel, that it will continue with its colonial and expansionist projects in the occupied Palestinian territory (oPt) through reinforcing the existence of the illegal settlements, outposts, and other colonial structures in the occupied West Bank. Moreover, Israel will continue with the construction of the segregation wall which is being constructed at the expense of the Palestinian lands and properties, even if it constitutes a grave breach of international law, human rights conventions, and all the agreements signed between the Palestinians and Israel, some of which are listed below:

  • United Nation Security Council Resolution 452 of 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 occupied Territory since 1967, including Jerusalem.’

  • Article 49 of the Fourth Geneva Convention of 1949: ‘the occupying power shall not deport or transfer parts of its own population into the Territory it occupies.’

  • The Roadmap of Peace signed on April 30, 2003  between Israel and the Palestinians (originally developed by the United States, in cooperation with Russia, the European Union, and the United Nations (the Quartet)) under which the Israeli Government agreed to freeze all settlement, indicated that: The -Government of Israel- immediately dismantles settlement outposts erected since March 2001, and, consistent with the Mitchell Report, [Government of Israel] freezes all settlement activity (including natural growth of settlements).The plan was adopted by the USCR 1515-2003.

  • The Forth Geneva Convention in Article 174 also prohibits the ‘extensive destruction and appropriation of property not justified by military necessity and carried out unlawfully and wantonly’.

[1]  Ulpana is an illegal Israeli outpost was established in the year 1995 outside the Israeli boundaries of the illegal settlement of Beit Il. The outpost located about 200 meters east of Beit Il settlement on a hilltop called Jabal Artis owned by Palestinian residents from Ramallah Governorate.

[2] PM: Ulpana homes to be evacuated, rebuilt elsewhere in Beit El

[3] According to â��Sasson report’ which is an official Israeli government report prepared by the former head of the State Prosecution Criminal Department, Talia Sasson, and published on March 8, 2005, Ulpana outpost was deemed illegal and marked to be dismantled.

[4]  Giv’at HaUlpana is one of them.

[5] Government okays Sasson report, panel set up to implement it

[6]  (The area located between the 1949 Armistice Line and the route of the Israeli Segregation Wall)




Categories: Settlements