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Israelis Expand Illegal Settlement of Ma'ale Adumim, Illegal Settlers Attack Safa Village, Release Boars Against Palestinian Farmers' Property

Israeli interior minister okays enlarging West Bank settlement

Date: 03 / 05 / 2009  Time:  09:42
Bethlehem – Ma’an –

Israeli Interior Minister Eli Yishai has decided to approve recommendations by a special committee within the Israeli Interior Ministry to expand the illegal West Bank settlement of Ma’ale Adumim by 12,000 dunums (12 million square meters).

Expansion will include 6,000 housing units to be built between the Ma’ale Adumim and Qedar settlements, it was announced on Sunday morning.

Yishai examined the committee’s recommendations last week, saying, “The decision will be pro-Israeli, despite expected international reactions.”

The expansion of Ma'ale Adumim will further separate the northern West Bank from the south, and isolate Jerusalem from the West Bank as a whole.

The special committee had originally approved the plan in late April, despite objections from the United States.

The plan would link Ma’ale Adumim, the largest settlement in the West Bank, with the nearby settlement of Qedar, seizing the land in between. This expansion, in addition to another planned expansion to the north of the settlement, will further isolate the north of the occupied West Bank from the south.

The proposed expansion would include 6,000 new housing units in between Ma’ale Adumim and Qedar, which is now home to 800 settlers. Some 30,000 people live in Ma’ale Adumim, according to the Israeli government.

In addition to the expansion, Qedar, which was previously linked to the Etzion block of settlements in the southern West Bank, would now be annexed to the Ma’ale Adumim Municipality.

Former Israeli Prime Ministers Ariel Sharon and Ehud Olmert had pushed to include Qedar on the western side of the separation wall, thereby consolidating Israel’s claim to the territory.

Ma'ale Adumim was originally built in 1976 in violation of international law and in defiance of a US monitoring mission that sought to prevent the construction of settlements.

Four illegal settlers, including two settler-soldiers, arrested after attacking a Palestinian village

Sunday May 03, 2009 01:53 by IMEMC & Agencies

Israeli online daily, Haaretz, reported on Saturday night that four illegal Israeli settlers, including two soldiers on leave, were arrested by the army after attacking Khirbit Safa village, near the southern West Bank City of Hebron.

The attack was carried out after the end of a 30-day mourning period of a 13-year old settler from Bat Ayin settlement, who was killed by a Palestinian in April.

The settlers attacked the Palestinian village and clashed with local residents. Two Palestinians were moderately injured as the army fired gas bombs and rubber-coated bullets.

Later on, soldiers evacuated the settlers from the Palestinian village.

Two of the four arrested settlers were soldiers; they were detained for using army issued weapons in attacking the Palestinian village.

 Army spokesperson condemned the attack and said that the soldiers misbehaved by participating in the clashes instead of “being concerned for the security of Israelis in the area”, Israeli online daily, Haaretz, reported.

 It is worth mentioning that 36 Palestinians were injured in a similar attack carried out by settlers against the village on the week of the attack which was carried out by a Palestinian resident from Khirbit Safa.  After the attack, soldiers arrested one Palestinian believed to be the attacker.

Boars released by illegal Israeli settlers attack barns, beehives near Nablus

Date: 03 / 05 / 2009  Time:  11:46
Nablus – Ma’an –

Boars set free by illegal Israeli settlers on Sunday damaged sheep barns and beehives in the northern West Bank village of Salem, east of Nablus.

According to Ja’afar Ishtaya, deputy mayor of Salem, “Boars attacked three homes and sheep barns, owned by Dheib and Ziyad Hassan, as well as 32 beehives owned by Taha Hamdan. The boars also attacked a car owned by Baha’ Hussein on his way out of the village.”

Ishtaya appealed to the Palestinian Authority to work out a solution for the boar attacks, highlighting swine flu fears, as well as physical damage caused by the animals.

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