The Palestinian Authority took advantage of the Passover holiday recess for large-scale illegal construction, including sites already under court-issued work-stop orders.
While Israelis enjoyed the week-long Passover holiday, the Palestinian Authority (PA) used the Civil Administration’s vacation to its full advantage. They carried out lightning-paced construction at a number of strategically-placed sites in Area C, the portion of Judea and Samaria under full Israeli jurisdiction.
One of the projects aimed at establishing facts on the ground during the inspectors’ vacation is on the outskirts of Rujeib, located between Shechem (Nablus) and the Jewish community of Itamar in Area C. Over the intermediate days of Passover, new areas were leveled for construction and infrastructure was laid for an illegal construction project that broke ground in recent months. Illegal construction also took place in the vicinity of Duma and at Khirbet Khurkosh.
“These are the tip of the iceberg of the systematic annexation-via-construction program that is carried out on Jewish holidays, which have become festivals of illegal construction in the Arab sector throughout Israel, and particularly in Judea and Samaria,” says Eitan Melet, Regavim’s Field Coordinator for Judea and Samaria. “The authorities know full well what will happen, but fail to take any preventative measures.”