Israeli authorities are to build another 620 new settlement houses in the West Bank, most of which will be in the settlement of Adam where a 31-year old Jewish man was stabbed and killed last month.
News of the huge housing expansion came from the Israeli Civil Administration’s Supreme Planning Committee on Wednesday, after it approved plans which included 370 new homes in Adam.
Defence Minister Avigdor Lieberman had vowed to build 400 new units there in the aftermath of the murder of father-of-two Yotam Ovadia in July.
The Supreme Planning Committee also approved plans to construct 399 housing units in other settlements, including in Nofim, Tzufim and Barkan in the northern West Bank.
Member of the Knesset Tamar Zandberg, who chairs the left-wing party Meretz, said the new housing plans were “like sticking a finger in the eye of any possible peace process”. She added: “The government doesn’t care about Israeli interests, only about the interests of settlers.”
However, a spokesman for the Yesha Council, which represents settlers, said: “That is a meagre amount and the smallest number of housing units to have been approved in the past year and a half.”