Israel’s plans to build 2,610 homes in East Jerusalem are underway

The PA believe the area should be part of its future state, but Netanyahu insists that Israel has a right to build in its capital.



Plans are underway to build 2,610 new homes in a diplomatically sensitive area of east Jerusalem known as Givat Hamatos, which Palestinians believe should be part of their future state.

East Jerusalem

A general view of the Givat Hamatos neighborhood is seen in east Jerusalem – Photo: REUTERS

The municipality issued its final approval for the project in December 2012 but waited almost two years, until Friday, September 24 when it placed news of the approval in a local paper, according to the Israeli non-governmental group Peace Now.

Building, however, can only occur once the municipality publishes tenders for the project, located on the southern side of the city, near another controversial project Jewish neighborhood known as Har Homa.

Peace Now, which opposes building over the pre-1967 lines, posted information about the project on its website Wednesday afternoon, just a few hours before Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and US President Barack Obama were scheduled to meet in the White House.

Netanyahu has always insisted that Israel has a right to build in its capital.

The US, however, frowns on Jewish building in east Jerusalem and in the West Bank and the issue is one of the sources of tension between the two countries.

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