Economic and social repercussions of Israeli settlements – ESCWA report


Fiftieth session Substantive session of 1995

Item 12 of the preliminary list* Item 8 of the provisional





           Economic and social repercussions of the Israeli settlements

           on the Palestinian people in the Palestinian territory,

           including Jerusalem, occupied since 1967, and on the Arab

population of the Syrian Golan

Note by the Secretary-General

In its resolution 1994/45 of 29 July 1994, entitled "Economic and social repercussions of the Israeli settlements on the Palestinian people in the Palestinian territory, including Jerusalem, occupied since 1967, and on the Arab population of the Syrian Golan", the Economic and Social Council requested the Secretary-General to submit to the General Assembly at its fiftieth session, through the Council, a report on the implementation of the resolution.  The General Assembly, in its resolution 49/32 of 19 December 1994, repeated that request.  The Secretary-General has the honour to submit to the members of the Assembly and the Council the annexed report, covering the period from April 1994 to March 1995, which was prepared by the Economic and Social Commission for Western Asia (ESCWA).


* A/50/50/Rev.1.

    ** E/1995/100.


Economic and social consequences of the establishment

of settlements by Israel in the Palestinian territory,

including Jerusalem, occupied since 1967, and the

Syrian Golan

Report prepared by the Economic and Social Commission

for Western Asia

1. The establishment of Israeli settlements in the Palestinian and other Arab territories occupied since 1967 has been the subject of various resolutions of the Security Council and the General Assembly.  In its resolution 446 (1979) of 22 March 1979, the Security Council determined that the Israeli policy and practice of establishing settlements in those territories had no legal validity and constituted a serious obstruction to achieving a comprehensive, just and lasting peace in the Middle East.  That position was reaffirmed unanimously in Security Council resolution 465 (1980) of 1 March 1980, in the preamble of which the Council took into account the need to consider measures for the impartial protection of private and public land and property, and water resources, and affirmed the applicability of the Geneva Convention relative to the Protection of Civilian Persons in Time of War, of 12 August 1949, 1/ to the Arab territories occupied by Israel since 1967, including Jerusalem.  In 1980, the International Labour Conference also expressed concern regarding the establishment of settlements and called for an end to that policy, as well as the dismantling of existing settlements.

2. At its forty-ninth session, in 1994, the General Assembly, having considered the reports of the Special Committee to Investigate Israeli Practices Affecting the Human Rights of the Palestinian People and Other Arabs of the Occupied Territories (A/49/67, A/49/172 and A/49/511), adopted resolution 49/36 of 9 December 1994, in which, inter alia, it expressed its concern about the continued violation of the human rights of the Palestinian people by Israel and reaffirmed in particular that the Israeli settlements in the occupied Palestinian territory, including Jerusalem, and the other Arab territories occupied by Israel since 1967, were illegal and an obstacle to a comprehensive settlement.

3. The General Assembly, in its resolution 49/132 of 19 December 1994, took note of the note by the Secretary-General on the economic and social consequences of the establishment of settlements by Israel in the Palestinian territory, including Jerusalem, occupied since 1967, and the Syrian Golan (A/49/169-E/1994/73); recognized the economic and social repercussions of the Israeli settlements on the Palestinian people in the Palestinian territory occupied by Israel since 1967, including Jerusalem, and on the Arab population of the Syrian Golan; reaffirmed the inalienable right of the Palestinian people and the population of the Syrian Golan to their natural and all other economic resources, and regarded any infringement thereof as being illegal; and requested the Secretary-General to submit to the General Assembly at its fiftieth session, through the Economic and Social Council, a report on the progress made in the implementation of the resolution.  The present report is submitted in response to that resolution.

4. The building of settlements began shortly after the Six Day War in 1967, with the first being established in the Syrian Golan.  Since that time, that policy has been developed more or less intensively and has accelerated since the beginning of 1990. 2/  Financial and tax incentives offered by the Government encourage settlers to make their homes in the occupied territories.

5. The signature on 13 September 1993 by the Government of Israel and the Palestine Liberation Organization of the Declaration of Principles on Interim Self-Government Arrangements (A/48/486-S/26560, annex) was a landmark in the history of Israeli-Palestinian relations.  The Declaration states in its article I that the aim of the Israeli-Palestinian negotiations is "to establish a Palestinian Interim Self-Government Authority, the elected Council … for the Palestinian people in the West Bank and the Gaza Strip, for a transitional period not exceeding five years, leading to a permanent settlement based on Security Council resolutions 242 (1967) and 338 (1973)".  The Declaration deferred discussion of the issue of settlements until the negotiations on permanent status, which should start not later than the beginning of the third year of the interim period, i.e., in May 1996.

6. On 4 May 1994, the Government of Israel and the Palestine Liberation Organization concluded an agreement in Cairo for the implementation of the Declaration of Principles signed in September 1993 (A/49/180-S/1994/727, annex). Soon after the Cairo agreement, the Israeli army completed its withdrawal from the Gaza Strip, but left some forces in the area surrounding 16 Israeli settlements occupied by approximately 4,000 settlers.

7. In July 1992, the Prime Minister of Israel announced a freeze on official settlement activities.  During the period under review, the Prime Minister has continued to assert his Government's commitment to the freeze.  At a meeting of the Knesset Foreign Affairs and Defence Committee in January 1995 he said: "We stand by our obligation that no building will take place outside Israeli sovereign territory except for cases where it is necessary in live settlements, and the building of 10,000 housing units which had already been started". 3/

8. Despite such declarations, official and private settlement activity in the occupied Palestinian territories has continued.  International concern about the issue was demonstrated by the debate convened in the Security Council on 28 February 1995, in response to a letter dated 22 February from the Permanent Representative of Djibouti addressed to the President of the Security Council (S/1995/151).  

9. During that debate, the Permanent Observer for Palestine stated that Israeli settlements had been established on occupied Palestinian lands, including Jerusalem, since 1967, in violation of the Fourth Geneva Convention. In numerous resolutions, the General Assembly and the Security Council had reaffirmed the applicability of the Convention to all the territories occupied by Israel since 1967 and called on Israel, the occupying Power, to abide by its provisions.  Nevertheless, settlement activity had continued until the present date, resulting in the existence of approximately 140 settlements in the occupied Palestinian territories, inhabited by approximately 300,000 settlers, including those in East Jerusalem.  The Permanent Observer stated that a continuation of Israeli settlement policy could not be reconciled with seeking to move forward in the peace process.  While the Declaration of Principles led to the postponement of negotiations on a number of important issues, including settlements, this did not mean any change in the Palestinian or international community's position on the status of the settlements, which were illegal and constituted a real obstacle to the achievement of a comprehensive peace.

10.  The Permanent Representative of Israel prefaced his remarks by stating that the debate in the Security Council was incompatible with the agreements signed by the Palestine Liberation Organization and Israel to resolve all outstanding permanent status issues, such as settlements and Jerusalem, in direct and bilateral negotiations.  In these same agreements, the Palestine Liberation Organization had committed itself to settling these issues at a specific time, in the negotiations on permanent status, at the final stage of the process.  The Permanent Representative of Israel stated that, at the time of its formation in July 1992, the present Government of Israel substantially changed Israel's settlement policy.  This was not done because of any external pressure or legal claims, and the new policy was adopted long before the agreements with the Palestine Liberation Organization.  Israel had not established any new settlements in the occupied territories since that time nor would it in the future.  The Government had stopped allocating public resources to support the extension of existing settlements, and no land had been confiscated to establish new ones.

11. The Israeli Prime Minister, in a written reply to a question addressed to him by the Chairman of the Legal Affairs Committee of the Israeli Parliament (Knesset), stated that, since the signing of the Declaration of Principles, the Israeli army had closed off areas totalling 38,000 dunums* in the West Bank for the purpose of expanding its training grounds.  The army also expropriated 750 dunums in order to establish camps and local command centres and 2,560 dunums to build six military roads. 4/  In the Gaza Strip, moreover, from the signing of the Declaration to the end of 1994, the Israeli army expropriated 71 dunums, which it used for establishing military positions. 5/

* Dunum is a measurement approximately 1,000 m2.

12. According to a report prepared by an expert and based on sources in the Israeli Civil Administration in the West Bank and documents published by that Administration, since the 1991 Madrid Conference, the Israeli authorities have expropriated some 12,000 dunums on the pretext of setting up nature preserves. The report notes that most of the quarries and stone-crushing mills established in the West Bank since the Oslo Agreement are situated in the western part near the Green Line, which indicates that there is a plan to shift the Line east of its present location in order to annex additional West Bank land.  The report indicates that the land expropriated for that purpose comprised a total area of 16,733 dunums.  On 23 December 1993, building plan No. 16/52 was filed, which included 2,677 dunums of land belonging to Tarkumiye, Dura and Khirbet Jamrura in the Hebron region.  On 11 August 1994, building plan No. 24/55 was filed for a digging and stone-cutting project covering an area of 9,685 dunums in the Tulkarm region.  On 26 August 1994, building plan No. 29/52 was filed for the Telem quarry covering an area of 1,744 dunums and situated on lands belonging to Dhahiriyya and Dura in Hebron.  The enterprises situated in the eastern portion of the West Bank, moreover, pose a real threat to the agricultural lands in the Jordan Valley region, owing to the fact that they produce environmental pollution, especially since the prevailing winds in the region are from the west throughout the year.  These enterprises include the Mabsur Basa'il quarry, situated on land belonging to the village of Majdal Bani Fadil, for which the related building plan No. 10/52 was filed on 31 March 1994 and which covers an area of 127 dunums; and the Kawkab al-Sabah stone-grinding enterprise, covering 2,500 dunums on land of Kafr Malik, for which the building plan was filed on 20 May 1994. 6/

13. The Israeli authorities issued a military decree carrying the number 93/4 on Saturday, 30 July 1994, 7/ closing an area of approximately 12,000 dunums of agricultural land in the Jiftlik/Jordan Valley district, in the pretext of security reasons, forbidding Palestinian inhabitants and farmers to enter their lands for a period of 10 months (from September 1994 to June 1995), precisely the period during which winter crops are grown in that warm region.  The area that was closed off contains 17 artesian wells and is considered the principal source of agricultural products to supply the markets of the West Bank during the winter season.  This closure  decree, which, according to Palestinian sources, will be repeated every year, 8/ will deprive approximately 3,000 Palestinian farmers of their principal livelihood, and will create many difficulties for families that own houses within the closed area.  It will also have a negative impact on the Palestinian economy in general, with the loss of the agricultural season, higher prices, increased importation of  agricultural  products and a rise in the number of unemployed persons. 9/

14. With regard to settlement roads, the Israeli authorities continue their policy of expansion of roads throughout the occupied Palestinian territories. It is estimated that more than a billion Israeli shekels (approximately 331 million United States dollars) will be spent for the building of a network of settlement roads during the next three years in preparation for the application of the second stage of the Declaration of Principles. 10/  The purpose of the expansion of these roads is to build a network of roads and streets connecting the Israeli settlements with one another, on the one hand, and to link those settlements to cities within Israel, on the other hand. However, the roads will bypass Palestinian cities, villages and agglomerations, so as to ensure the greatest protection for the Jewish settlements.  Palestinian experts view this plan as an attempt to prejudice in Israel's favour the results of the negotiations on the occupied lands in the final stage, inasmuch as it will tend to consolidate a new geographical situation that will be difficult to change and whose implementation will involve the expropriation of thousands of dunums of land in Arab districts. 11/

15. With a view to the execution of the plans for settlement roads, the Knesset Foreign Affairs and Defence Committee has budgeted 30 million Israeli shekels (approximately 10 million United States dollars) to build a settlement road in the Ramallah area during the current year (1995). 12/  In a report that it published in early 1995, the Peace Now movement affirmed that a plan existed to build such a settlement road, which is to make a detour around the city of Ramallah on the east, connecting the settlements of Ofra, Pesagot and Adam with highway number 60, and that the plan calls for the expropriation of 2,640 dunums. 13/  On 17 January 1995, Palestinians from the town of Bira staged a protest against this project in the areas threatened with expropriation.  The Israeli army intervened in order to disperse the protesters, the soldiers using tear-gas bombs and beating participants. 14/  Israeli analysts feel that this road and the three other roads whose creation has been announced by the Israeli authorities, in addition to involving the expropriation of vast areas of Arab land, will encourage more Israelis to reside in the Jewish settlements, which will offer them safe routes that do not pass through Palestinian towns. 15/

16. The execution of the building plans for settlement roads did in fact begin in the southern part of the West Bank in mid-December 1994.  One of these is plan No. 956 for highway 356, which forms part of highway 80, and another is the project for highway 35, which will link Taqwa` and Hebron without passing through the Arab villages of Si`ir and Shuyukh. 16/

17. Regarding the expansion of Jewish settlements, a report prepared by the Peace Now movement disclosed the filing of 11 building plans with the Israeli Civil Administration in 1994, including the creation of thousands of new housing units in the Jewish settlements over an area of 4,000 dunums.  This indicates the intention to provide housing for tens of thousands of new settlers.  The report states that it appears from the study of those plans that the aim behind them is to create a Jewish demographic settlement bloc along the entire line from the Kafr Kasem interchange to Givat Ze'ev, north of Jerusalem, by expanding the settlements of Kedumim, Elkana 2, Nahleil, Dolev and Beit Horon, which will result in the creation of an enclave containing tens of Palestinian villages peopled by thousands of Palestinians, cut off from the rest of the West Bank. Building in the vicinity of Efrat, south of Jerusalem, moreover, and the improvement of the Jerusalem-Gush Etzion road, which includes tunnels and bridges, reveals a plan to create a similar enclave in the southern area. 17/

18. In September 1994, the Israeli Ministry of Construction and Housing announced that 87 apartments were being offered for rent in three settlements located near the Green Line.  In addition, the Israeli Prime Minister approved the preparation of new land for the building of additional housing units in Alfe Menache, a settlement located 3 kilometres from the Green Line. 18/

19. The results of a study done by two Israeli experts for Knesset member Dedi Zucker showed that settlement-building operations in West Bank settlements were proceeding at an unprecedented rate, in contrast to the policy adopted by the Israeli Government.  The study, which was carried out at the beginning of 1995 and included 49 settlements, indicated that the building operations were being carried out by private companies, without any financing by the Israeli Government but with permits from the local councils and Israeli ministry officials.  Thus, at present 325 new housing units are being built in the settlements of Elkana, Alfe Menache, Saffarin Tekfa, Berman, Ari'el and Hashne'em.  Knesset member Zucker believes that private building has been practised since 1992 as an effective way of circumventing the government decision to freeze the building of settlements and turn that decision into a concept devoid of content.  The study, he went on to say, showed not merely that the Israeli ministries turned a blind eye to what was going on, but that they cooperated effectively with the settlers in the attempt to thwart the government decision to freeze the construction of settlements.  The findings of the study also showed that the Government was facilitating the sale of the housing units built by private enterprise and continued to install public utilities and provide the necessary infrastructure on an open, regular basis, thus helping to stimulate the settlement movement. 19/

20. Of particular importance from the standpoint of expansion of Jewish settlements is the report prepared by the Israeli Ministry of Construction and Housing, details of which were published by the Israeli press.  According to the report, during 1994 the Ministry allocated 140 million shekels to infrastructure development and construction in settlements in the West Bank.  During the current year, the Ministry will allocate 95 million shekels for the same purpose, including 60 million shekels for the building of 3,200 housing units in three settlements in the Jerusalem area and 19 million shekels for the construction of housing units and infrastructure works in settlements in the Jordan Valley. 20/  The report stated that in 1994 the Ministry had built 1,833 new housing units, including 1,026 in Betar, 796 in Ma'aleh Adumim and 10 in the Jordan Valley.  During the current year, 900 units are to be built in Betar, 1,080 in Ma'aleh Adumim, 400 in Kiryat Sefer, 800 in Givat Ze'ev, 300 in Givat Hezet and 50 in the Jordan Valley.  This intensive construction is expected to result in an increase in the number of Jewish settlers by approximately 12,000. 21/

21. Furthermore, the Jewish settlers, through their various organizations, the most important of which is the Jewish Settlements Council, have prepared a master plan for promoting Jewish settlement during 1995 based on enterprises either already carried out or currently being planned and including the construction of 6,262 new housing units in 20 settlements in the north, centre and south of the West Bank. 22/

22. The plans for settlement in Jerusalem for 1995 involve the proposed building of thousands of housing units in Jewish settlements on the outskirts of Jerusalem within a circle about the city of Jerusalem having a diameter of 23 kilometres. 23/  As Israeli authorities issue conflicting statements regarding the legitimacy of the term "Greater Jerusalem", the work of expanding existing Jewish settlements and establishing new settlements within the confines of the map of Greater Jerusalem is being stepped up.  At the same time that the Israeli Minister for Foreign Affairs declares that "Greater Jerusalem" is "not a political term" and that Jerusalem's borders are those defined by the government decision of 1967 and the 1981 Jerusalem law, which does not include such places as the settlements of Ma'aleh Adumim, Givat Ze'ev or Betar, the Israeli Construction and Housing Minister reaffirms his commitment to the map of Greater Jerusalem and to efforts to strengthen the surrounding Jewish settlements. 24/

23. The settlement of Ma'aleh Adumim, which lies 7 to 8 kilometres east of Jerusalem, is an example of the intensified settlement activity taking place on the outskirts of Jerusalem.  At the end of 1994, the Israeli Ministry of Tourism approved the building of 4,000 hotel rooms in areas belonging to the settlement. The Israeli Ministry of Construction and Housing, moreover, has begun the construction of 2,000 new housing units there and is planning to build 3,000 more units and to use 6,000 dunums of land added to the settlement in December 1994, pursuant to a military decree issued by the Military Commander of the Central District. 25/  A main bypass is being built at the junction leading to the settlement, involving a government investment amounting to 15 million shekels, and newspaper sources have noted that the Israeli Civil Administration intends to transfer the present military checkpoint, located near the village of Ze'em on the road to Jerusalem several kilometres to the east, beyond the settlement.  The Israeli Deputy Minister of Construction and Housing, commenting on these reports, said that as far as he was concerned, Ma'aleh Adumim and its area of influence were not part of the West Bank but were considered a settlement in the centre of the country.  Thousands of housing units would be erected in Ma'aleh Adumim every year, including the current year, he said, in order to link the town to Jerusalem. 26/

24. In addition, there have been repeated reports of plans to build new settlements in the area surrounding Jerusalem, including Har Homa and Rekhis Shuafat. 27/  The Israeli press has carried reports of a plan prepared by the Israel Land Department involving the building of more than 30,000 housing units in Jerusalem over the next five years, most of them in Arab areas of the city and its surroundings.  Construction  is  expected  to  begin on 10,000 housing units during the current year. 28/

25. The number of settlers living in Jewish settlements increased over the past year, the bulk of this increase being recorded in settlements in the area around Jerusalem. 29/  According to the Jewish Settlements Council, as of October 1994 the total number of Jewish settlers was approximately 140,000, including 135,000 living in 125 settlements in the West Bank and 6,000 in 20 settlements in the Gaza Strip.  The information provided by the Settlements Council, which is based primarily on the payment of local taxes, conflicts with the figures announced by the Israeli Central Bureau of Statistics in its bulletin of 21 March 1995, according to which the number of Jewish settlers in the West Bank and the Gaza Strip had undergone a 9 per cent increase over the past year, reaching 127,000. 30/  In the first half of 1994, 1,637 new Jewish immigrants moved to East Jerusalem out of a total of 41,291 who arrived in Israel during that period. 31/  The number of Israeli settlers in East Jerusalem, according to "official and unofficial Israeli sources, together with press reports", has reached till the end of 1994, more than 170,000 settlers.  This brings the total Israeli settler population living in East Jerusalem, the West Bank and the Gaza Strip to more than 300,000. 32/

26. The policy of stepped-up Jewish settlement and relocation of thousands of Jews to the city of Jerusalem is being implemented at the expense of Palestinian residents of the city and Arab villages.  The clearest evidence of this is furnished by the operations of destroying Palestinian homes built without permits in the Jerusalem area.  Owing to the limited land allocated for building by Arabs, the difficulty of obtaining a building permit and the high cost of such permits, Palestinians usually have no choice but to build their homes without a legal permit.  In September 1994, hundreds of Palestinians and sympathetic Israelis held a demonstration near homes in the Tur district whose destruction had been ordered by the Israeli authorities.  In a joint statement issued by them, the demonstrators affirmed that since 1986 the Israeli authorities had destroyed a total of 210 Arab homes in the city of Jerusalem for reasons relating to permits, and that destruction of homes was currently going on at the rate of 50 per year.  The statement added:  "Increased building of settlements, expropriation of Palestinian land and destruction of homes constitute a carefully thought-out [Israeli] policy aimed at driving out the Arab population and upsetting the demographic balance in favour of the settler presence in Jerusalem".  The number of Palestinian families in Jerusalem who have no shelter or live in inadequate housing as a result of the policy of destruction and expulsion followed by Israel is estimated at approximately 21,000. 33/

27. In the occupied Syrian Golan Heights, a new Israeli settlement was established in August 1994 and named "Dor Ha Golan", bringing the number of Israeli settlements built in the Golan Heights since 1967 to 33. 34/ Construction work to expand existing settlements continued, and 2,000 new housing units, the construction of which began before 1992 during the Likud rule, are near completion.  Construction work in those units was halted for about seven months, from July 1992 when the new Labour Government issued an order to freeze construction work until March 1993, when the freezing order was rescinded in the Golan.  Work also continued to develop the infrastructure of the settlements, and private and public funds were invested in roads as well as in agricultural, industrial and tourism enterprises.  The Israeli Minister of Industry confirmed in October 1994 the Government's continued support for the development of the Golan:  "The government policy by which the Golan Heights was termed a national priority A region [entitled to the most generous development and housing benefits] must be upheld". 35/

28. Israeli sources estimated that the number of settlers in the Golan increased during 1994 by 10 per cent.  A study carried out by the Jaffee Centre for Strategic Studies in Tel Aviv in 1994 reveals that the number of settlers during the period July 1991 to March 1994 increased by 2,143, as their number rose from 11,017 in July 1991 to 12,000 in 1993 and reached 13,160 in March 1994. 36/

29. In addition to land seizure and the establishment and expansion of settlements, the utilization of water resources in the occupied Palestinian territories is an important issue that negatively affects the lives of Palestinians and their economic and social conditions.  According to Palestinian estimates, the per capita water consumption among Palestinians in the West Bank ranges between 22 and 28 cubic metres as compared with 165 cubic metres for the Israeli population.  This great disparity is due to a series of military orders that restrict the utilization of available water resources by Palestinians and prevent them from drilling new wells or developing existing ones while allowing Israeli settlers to drill new wells in their settlements and pump large quantities of water without control or restriction. 37/

30. According to Palestinians, the Israeli water policy in the Gaza Strip has led to a "dangerous" and "distressing" situation.  Riad al-Khodary, Head of the Palestinian Delegation to the Multilateral Talks on Water, says:  "Israel's infringement on water resources in the Gaza Strip is embodied in the following three major steps:  first, diverting the course of the Gaza river before it reaches the Green Line, which entails the loss of 20 million cubic metres of rainwater; second, the drilling of 25 wells along the eastern border of the Strip, which deprives it of half of the water flowing to it from the West; third, the pumping by the Gush Katif settlements of Palestinian groundwater through the 14 wells existing in those settlements". 38/  Water experts believe that the depletion of water reserves in the Gaza Strip and sea-water intrusion have caused the salinity of the water to be six times higher than the internationally accepted level and thus 60 per cent of the water is no longer suitable for drinking or irrigation purposes. 39/

31. The uprooting of fruit trees by the Israeli occupation authorities and Israeli settlers is a daily Israeli practice in the West Bank as it was in the Gaza Strip previously.  It is estimated that, during the period of the intifadah, the Israeli authorities uprooted more than 117,000 olive trees in order to build settlements and for security reasons.  Sewage leaking from Israeli settlements spoiled more than 500 dunums of vineyards in the West Bank. The annual loss resulting from these practices was estimated at $1.5 million, the overall loss exceeding $10 million. 40/

32. The occupied Palestinian territories were sealed off by the Israeli army several times during 1994 and the first months of 1995.  The closure led to the breakdown of all productive sectors and public services in the Palestinian areas, in addition to preventing tens of thousands of Palestinian workers employed in Israeli economic sectors from reporting for work, which contributed to raising unemployment rates, especially in the Gaza Strip, where 65 per cent of the active population is unemployed.

33. After a suicide attack carried out by Palestinians in October 1994 in Tel Aviv, the Israeli Prime Minister called for "complete separation of the Israeli and Palestinian peoples in order to curb terrorism".  In the wake of another suicide attack carried out last January, the Israeli Prime Minister established a military security committee headed by the Minister of Police and entrusted with the task of formulating plans for implementing the total separation of Israel and the Palestinian areas.  The committee submitted a plan that includes the building of a security fence, the deployment of soldiers and border guards as well as the establishment of checkpoints and an early warning system and barbed wire.  In addition, it prohibits Palestinians from working in Israel, bans travelling and transport and shuts off Jerusalem.  The proposed security zone will be 30 kilometres long to the east of the Green Line, where Israeli soldiers will be stationed, and will use advanced technological means as well as trained dogs.  Eight to 10 crossing points will be established along the separating zone.  The implementation of the plan will cost half a billion United States dollars. 41/


Encroachment and seizure of Palestinian lands and the building

of settlements on them

(April 1994-March 1995)



(in dunums)



Rantis village/

Ramallah district

Hundreds of dunums

Lands that were seized in November 1993 were cleared, and dozens of olive trees were uprooted in order to build two roads to serve the settlers.


14 April 1994

Shuafat and Beit Hanina


Land and real estate were seized pursuant to the decision taken by the Organization and Construction Committee of the Jerusalem Municipality in order to complete the building of road No. 1, which links the southern and northern parts of Jerusalem.


20 April 1994

Al-Musafir village/

Yatta/Hebron district

30 000

The village was sealed off by the army, and its 8,000 inhabitants grouped in 12 units were evacuated and prohibited from undertaking agricultural and pastoral activities.

Al-Quds, 23 April 1994

Taquu village/ Bethlehem


The land, which is planted with hundreds of fruit trees and contains a cemetery belonging to one of the families living in the village, was seized and fenced.


4 May 1994

Yasuf village


The land, which is planted with olive trees, was sealed off by the army.


27 April 1994

Qaryut village


Settlers from the nearby Raheel settlement built a road 4 kilometres long and uprooted dozens of olive trees, whereas settlers from the "Ilia" settlement built another road to the east of the village.


31 May 1994

Siniria village/

Tulkarm district


The Civil Administration informed the inhabitants of the village of its intention to close the site for security reasons.


9 June 1994

Area of Wadi Shubash between Mghir and Raba villages

32 000

The area was sealed off by the army, and farmers and shepherds were expelled forcibly.


10 June 1994



The land was seized under the pretext that it was situated behind the Green Line.  The confiscated land is planted with olive and apricot trees.


24 June 1994

Kafr Qaddum

1 000

It was announced that the land had been seized and annexed to the "Kadumim" settlement in the context of the general organization plan of the Mutsibih Kadumim district in the settlement.


23 June 1994

Taqwa` village/

Bethlehem district


Settlers from the neighbouring Taqwa` settlement seized the land and erected power lines on it.


4 July 1994

Haris village/Nablus district


The land seized was fenced with barbed wire, and its owners were prohibited from entering it; work started in order to build a road to serve the settlers.


14 July 1994


North Jericho Jordan Valley

12 000

The area was closed by the army pursuant to military order 93/4, which prohibits the inhabitants and farmers of the region from entering it during the period 1 September 1994 to 1 June 1995, the period during which winter crops are cultivated in this warm region.  Some 500 families will be affected by this decision, which will also lead to the closure of a primary school managed by UNRWA.


31 July 1994

Kafr Laqif


Settlers from the "Kerneh Shamron" settlement are building sports fields on the land, which belongs to the inhabitants of the village.


5 August 1994

Khidr village/

Bethlehem district

Hundreds of dunums

The cultivated area was cleared in order to build road No. 60 to serve the settlers.


2 August 1994

Kafr al-Labad/



The land was seized in order to expand the Anab settlement situated to the east of the village.


8 August 1994



The Israeli army built a fence 2 kilometres long and 6 metres high around a large area of the village under the pretext of protecting the inhabitants of the neighbouring "Bitar" settlement from stone-throwing.  The land that was fenced is planted with olive trees.

Al-Quds, 28 August 1994

Deir Balut


The inhabitants of the village received an order from the military authorities authorizing the seizure of an unspecified area of their lands in order to use it for military purposes.


23 August 1994



Settlers from the nearby "Tineh" settlement seized the land and fenced it with barbed wire.


11 September 1994

Beit Anan/Ramallah


The land was seized under the pretext that it was situated behind the Green Line in no man's land, and work started in order to build a road to serve the settlers.


9 October 1994

Dura and al-Dhahiriya/Hebron

4 000

The land was seized in order to establish a quarry.


29 October 1994


1 500

The land, which includes three drinking-water wells, was seized by settlers.


15 December 1994

Kafr Qaddum


The land was seized by settlers from the nearby Kadumim settlement.


20 December 1994



The land was cleared in order to build a security fence around the nearby Areel settlement.


28 December 1994

Husan and ar-Rachaida/

Bethlehem district


The land was closed by the army in order to build a road linking the settlements of the region to road No. 60. Some 2,286 olive and fruit trees and vines were uprooted.


30 December 1994



6 000

The governor of the central region ordered the annexation of this area to the Ma'aleh Adumim settlement in order to build a new district for the settlers.


9 December 1994; Ha'aretz,

21 December 1994

Al-Lubban al-Sharqiya/



Lands were cleared, and more than 700 olive trees were uprooted in order to build a road linking the nearby Areel settlement.


6 February 1995



The municipality of Bira received a notification regarding the seizure of an unspecified area of land to the north of the town in order to build a road 11 kilometres long and 100 metres wide.  The road will also cross the lands of Yatin, Ain Yabrud, Salwad, Barqa and Deir Dabwan villages.


26 December 1994


1/ United Nations, Treaty Series, vol. 75, No. 973.

2/ Clyde Mark, "Soviet Jewish emigration", CRS Issue Brief (Washington, D.C., Congressional Research Service, Library of Congress, 1994).

3/ The Jerusalem Post, 18 January 1995, p. 2.

4/ Al-Quds, 6 March 1995, p. 1.

5/ Land Research Committee of the Arab Studies Society, Special report on land confiscation  and  settlement in the West Bank – Palestine (in Arabic) (Jerusalem), p. 11.

6/ Al-Nahar, 5 September 1994, report by Khalil Al-Tafakaji, settlement affairs expert, Jerusalem, pp. 1-9.

7/ Al-Quds, 31 July 1994.

8/ Ibid., 8 August 1994, p. 6.

9/ Ibid.

10/ Foundation for Middle East Peace, Report on Israeli Settlement in the Occupied Territories (Washington, D.C., May 1995), p. 1.

11/ Ibid., 3 December 1994, p. 6.

12/ Ibid., 13 December 1994, p. 6.

13/ Peace Now, Report on Planned Expansion of Settlements (Jerusalem, January 1995), p. 2.

14/ The Jerusalem Post, 18 January 1995, p. 1.

15/ Ibid., p. 2.

16/ Al-Quds, 13 December 1994, p. 5.

17/ Peace Now, Report on Planned Expansion of Settlements (Jerusalem, January 1995), p. 1.

18/ Al-Quds, 1 October 1994, p. 9.

19/ Ibid., 18 January 1995, p. 6.

20/ The Jerusalem Post, 18 January 1995, p. 1.

21/ Al-Quds, 18 January 1995, p. 6.

22/ Yedioth Aharonoth, 18 January 1995, report by K. Petersburg, p. 1.

23/ Ibid., 20 January 1995, "Map of settlement in Greater Jerusalem", p. 2.

24/ The Jerusalem Post, 19 January 1995, pp. 1-2.

25/ Al-Quds, 22 December 1994, p. 23.

26/ Ibid., 6 January 1995, p. 24.

27/ The Jerusalem Post, 13 December 1994, p. 1.

28/ Al-Quds, 25 November 1994, p. 7.

29/ Ha'aretz, 14 November 1994.

30/ Ar-Rai, 22 March 1995, p. 1.

31/ Foundation for Middle East Peace, Report on Israeli Settlement in the Occupied Territories (Washington, D.C., November 1994), p. 2.

32/ Ibid., p. 8.

33/ Al-Quds, 11 September 1994, p. 6.

34/ Foundation for Middle East Peace, Report on Israeli Settlement in the Occupied Territories (Washington, D.C., February 1995), p. 9.

35/ Ibid.

36/ Ibid.

37/ Al-Quds, 25 August 1994, p. 9, and 22 April 1994.

38/ Ibid., 26 September 1994, p. 4.

39/ Ibid., 19 April 1994, pp. 1 and 18.

40/ Ibid., 2 March 1995, pp. 1 and 22.

41/ Ar-Rai, 18 March 1995, p. 26.



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