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Tayseer Khaled: The new settlement plan on Qalandia airport land is being prepared under the US administration cover
May 2, 2017

Tayseer Khaled, a member of the Executive Committee of the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO), a member of the Political Bureau of the Democratic Front for the Liberation of Palestine (DFLP), blamed the US administration for the consequences of Israeli housing ministry and the Israeli occupation municipality intention in Jerusalem, to implement a large settlement plan aimed at building 15,000 settlement units on the land of Jerusalem Airport and lands of Qalandia that surround the settlement area called "Atarot" which was established by the occupation authorities on the land of the citizens in north-west Jerusalem.

He added that the plan, which the Israeli government was forced to freeze it under the previous US administration, has re-emerged under the silence and complicity of the new US administration headed by Donald Trump. The plan includes the construction of 15 thousand housing units on about 600 acres of the abandoned airport land and from the air industry plant, near Qalandia checkpoint, in addition to lands that have been expropriated in the early 1970s by the Labor government at the time, as well as digging a tunnel under the Kafr Aqeb neighborhood, in order to link the new settlement neighborhood with the eastern settlement bloc that remained outside the Apartheid Wall to separate the Palestinian neighborhoods in north Jerusalem, from the city of Ramallah, to impose a total siege on the occupied city of Jerusalem and completely isolate it from its Palestinian environment in the West Bank.

Khaled was surprised that the Israeli housing ministry and the Israeli occupation municipality in Jerusalem, formally announced the settlement plan, at the time, where a Palestinian delegation is holding consultations with the staff of US administration, which is responsible for the political settlement file of the Palestinian-Israeli conflict, and while preparing for a meeting between president Donald Trump and Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, as if the new US administration has given the green light to start implementing this large settlement plan, in parallel with the so-called "Jerusalem Day", which comes in May and in the context of bilateral understandings, which were held between the American and Israeli sides, and which Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu claimed to reach them during his recent visit to Washington and his meeting with Trump and elements of the new US administration in mid-February.

Tayseer Khaled also condemned the clear complicity between the Israeli government and the new US administration, and he called for an urgent action and heading without hesitation to the UN Security Council, calling on it to desist from dealing with Israel as a state above international law, and to take its responsibilities and to intervene to push the occupying state ,towards respecting UN Security Council Resolution 2334 earlier this year, which condemned all Israeli settlement activities in the occupied Palestinian Bank, including East Jerusalem, and called on Israel to stop them unconditionally.


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