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09/01/2012 Back To List
The Ongoing Settlement Surge in East Jerusalem

The Israeli government is on an East Jerusalem settlement binge.  The pace of approvals of new settlement plans has been so fast and so furious in recent weeks, that even the most experienced settlement watchers are having trouble tracking them.

 

Context

 

As we reportedly previously, from March until the end of October 2010 (in the wake of the visit of Vice President Biden to Jerusalem and the Ramat Shlomo debacle), Prime Minister Netanyahu imposed a quiet but comprehensive settlement freeze on East Jerusalem. No new plans were approved, nor new tenders issued, during this period.  On November 1, following the expiration of the official settlement “moratorium,” the East Jerusalem the floodgates were opened, ushering in a period during which the pace of plan approvals exceeded the previously high levels of 2008 and 2009 by 50%-200%. If initially this surge could be attributed to a backlog created during the de facto freeze of the previous 8 months, since the summer of 2011 the approval of new plans has been so intense – unprecedented in scope since the 1970’s – that it is clear that the surge represents a concerted effort/policy on the part of Israel to ramp up East Jerusalem settlement activity.  [For empirical data documenting settlement developments during the period before, during, and after 2010’s “quiet” freeze, see our presentation “East Jerusalem Developments and Trends” (2006 - January 15th, 2011)].

 

During much of this post-November 2010 period, the Israeli government has asserted that new plans were “merely” being approved, but that few tenders actually published – and thus criticism of its actions was unjustified. However, we have cautioned that this argument was disingenuous, given that “merely” approving plans as significant political impact and sets the stage for future (even imminent) tenders and construction.  Events of the past two months bear this warning out.  Now, new tenders are being published at a rate significantly higher than the already high levels of those in recent years, and we have every reason to expect that this trend will continue, with dire implications for Jerusalem and the two-state solution.

 

Summary of the tenders announced or expedited in the last two months


(Map of recent tenders can be viewed/downloaded here)

 

November 1, 2011:  The Prime Minister’s Office announced (also here) that in response to the Palestinian Authority’s UNESCO bid, 1650 new settlement units would be built in East Jerusalem.  For weeks following the announcement, not only were the tenders not published, but the Prime Minister’s office couldn’t even say where the tendered units would be located – underscoring the fact that the announcement of these tenders was made for its political impact and that the actual tenders were not yet ready for publication.

 

November 15, 2011 The Israeli government’s bureaucracy caught up with the press releases of the Prime Minister’s office and the details of the new tenders were determined: 430 units in Har Homa C, 319 units in Har Homa B, 743 units in Ramot, and 65 units in Pisgat Ze’ev (Ministry of Construction & Housing press release herein Hebrew).

 

December 18, 2011 The Ministry of Construction announced (also here) tenders for an additional 500 units in Har Homa C.

 

December 28, 2011 The Jerusalem Municipal Planning Committee approved Town Plan 13290, for 130 housing units in Gilo (hereherehere, and here). This approval took place in anticipation of deliberations regarding final approval of the plan by the Regional Planning Committee, anticipated shortly.

 

December 28, 2011 The Jerusalem District Planning Committee approved two new plans initiated by the Elad settler organization in Silwan. Town Plan 13901, for a new settler-run tourist center at the Givati parking lot site, just below the Old City’s Dung Gate, will reportedly include 250 parking spaces, an archaeological park, a museum, offices, an events hall and a library (also here). Plan 13542 provides for Elad-run tourist installations, a ritual bath etc. on the slopes of Wadi Hilweh in Silwan. These plans are part of the self-declared settler scheme to transform Silwan into an extension of the Jewish Quarter of the Old City.

 

December 30, 2011 The first of the tenders announced on November 17 (after being first announced, without details, on November 1) were actually published (without fanfare and without anyone really noticing) on the Israel Land Authority website: 247 units (of the 319 announced) in Har Homa B, and the 65 units in Pisgat Ze’ev.

 

January 3, 2012 Despite the fact that the Prime Minister’s office was cautioned in advance that the publication of new tenders in the run-up to or during the January 3 Amman talks could be highly problematic, a few hours before the talks started the ILA publicly distributed the tenders (that appeared on its website on Dec. 30), making it a news story in Israel and beyond (hereherehere, and here).

 

Comment

 

This surge is not over.  In the coming days and weeks we anticipate the publication of tenders for Har Homa C(983 units), Har Homa B (82 units & public buildings), Ramot (713 units) and Pisgat Ze’ev (625 units), as well as approval of the highly problematic Givat Hamatos plans.

 

It is abundantly clear that settlement activity of this pace and scope will (a) derail the Sisyphean efforts underway to resume a political process; (b) change the potential borders between Israel and Palestine; (c) make the creation of a border in Jerusalem inordinately more difficult; and (d) within 2-3 years undermine the very possibility of the two-state solution.


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18/9/2014 Specter of E-1 Raised by Plan to Relocate Bedouin

 


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17/9/2014 East Jerusalem Clashes Continue

 


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4/9/2014 The Real Story about those new units "approved" for Palestinians in East Jerusalem

 


26/8/2014 Gilo Tenders Awarded, but (for now) EJ Settlement Freeze Continues

 


19/5/2014 Jerusalem Settlements - The (Proximate, Contributing) Cause of the Collapse

 


19/5/2014 Post-Collapse - De Facto Freeze in East Jerusalem, But the Lull Won’t Last

 


19/5/2014 Are We Sliding Toward Religious War? A Brief Survey of Key Jerusalem Developments/Trends

 


5/3/2014 Framework Language and Jerusalem: Gimmicks Are NOT the Answer

 


5/3/2014 New Israeli Yeshiva Approved...in Downtown Sheikh Jarrah

 


5/3/2014 Playing with Fire, Part 2: Elad Set to Gain Control of Area Adjacent to the Temple Mt/Haram al Sharif

 


5/3/2014 Playing with Fire, Part 1: Debating the Status Quo on the Temple Mount

 


3/3/2014 Demolition orders in E-1

 


9/1/2014 New Seidemann Op-Ed in the Guardian: The myth of an undivided Jerusalem is collapsing under its own weight

 


12/12/2013 Danny Seidemann Injured by Stone-Thrower - Condition Update & Comment

 


12/12/2013 East Jerusalem Settlements since the Resumption of Talks: the Facts & their Implications

 


12/12/2013 The [Apparent] Re-Emergence of the “Greater Jerusalem” Gimmick

 


12/12/2013 Post-Script: Those Planning Tenders for 24,000 New Settlement Units

 


27/8/2013 Ramat Shlomo Back in the Headlines

 


27/8/2013 Funding Approved for Settler-Run Projects in Silwan and Jebel Mukabber

 


27/8/2013 Three Palestinians Killed by Israeli Forces in Qalandia RC

 


27/8/2013 ?Uptick in East Jerusalem Home Demolitions

 


19/8/2013 Pyromaniacs Target the Temple Mount

 


19/8/2013 Jerusalem Residency Concerns Resurface

 


19/8/2013 New Pro-Settlement Guidelines on Absentee Property Law

 


19/8/2013 A U.S. Court Rules on Jerusalem

 


16/8/2013 Timeline/details of Recent Jerusalem-Related Settlement Developments

 


16/8/2013 Bibi, Settlements & Peace Talks -- Analysis

 


13/6/2013 The A-Zayyem/Mount of Olives Interchange, Plan 14049

 


13/6/2013 Tenders Awarded for Ramot Expansion, Additional Tenders for Mordot Gilo

 


13/6/2013 Everything You Need to Know About Jerusalem & the Absentee Property Law

 


7/5/2013 The IDF Colleges on the Mt. of Olives Off the Agenda, Again

 


7/5/2013 Plans Published for Old City Cable Car

 


7/5/2013 Sharansky Plan Hits a Wall, no pun intended

 


7/5/2013 The Wall/Barrier vs. Cremisan & Beit Jala

 


5/5/2013 Spatial Shaping in J'lem Continues with Opening of Route 20

 


24/4/2013 Concerns about Proposed “Solution” to Women’s Prayer Issue at the Western Wall

 


22/4/2013 The Politics of Waste Treatment in East Jerusalem

 


15/4/2013 Fifty New Units in East Talpiot

 


14/1/2013 E-1/Bab ash-Shams: What Happened, What it Means, What Next

 


28/12/2012 Mordot Gilo South - APPROVED

 


19/12/2012 Givat Hamatos APPROVED - What it Means

 


17/12/2012 Breaking News - Approvals this week - Ramat Shlomo & Givat Hamatos

 


5/12/2012 The E-1 Crisis...This Is Not a Drill

 


6/11/2012 More than 1200 New Tenders Issued for Pisgat Ze'ev and Ramot

 


31/10/2012 New Construction Approved in Har Homa

 


30/10/2012 New East Jerusalem Settlement Construction Approved - East Talpiot units for Israeli Security Personnel

 


24/10/2012 Mordot Gilo Construction Approved

 


24/10/2012 Plans for IDF Colleges on Mt. of Olives Deposited for Public Review & Explanation of Location

 


24/10/2012 Taking the Garbage to East Jerusalem

 


24/10/2012 Is the Palestinian Population of East Jerusalem Becoming More Israeli -- No

 


24/10/2012 Pisgat Zeev in the News

 


18/10/2012 Crisis Brewing on the Temple Mount

 


17/9/2012 Jerusalem, Netanyahu and the two-state solution

 


16/9/2012 Issue to watch: East Jerusalem Home Demolitions

 


16/9/2012 Attacks on Palestinians in Jerusalem – Sign of the “Hebronization” of the City

 


16/9/2012 Jerusalem in the Headlines: Ras al-Amud, Temple Mount, the Barrier, Elad, & Har Homa

 


15/9/2012 Jerusalem: Political Football in U.S. Presidential Race

 


14/9/2012 In Memorium: Our Friend, Chris Stevens

 


2/7/2012 New Tenders Published for East Jerusalem Settlement Construction

 


2/7/2012 Plans for New IDF War College on the Mt. of Olives Approved for Public Review

 


8/5/2012 Arab VIPs Start Coming to Jerusalem

 


7/5/2012 Givat Hamatos – Nearing the Point-of-No-Return

 


7/5/2012 IDF College on the Mt. of Olives – Moving Forward

 


7/5/2012 Kidmat Tzion – Municipal Approval Anticipated Soon

 


7/5/2012 Mughrabi Ramp – Some Good News

 


6/5/2012 Beit Hanina Settlement Effort Continues

 


10/4/2012 Late Winter Freeze in East Jerusalem turns to Spring Thaw

 


8/4/2012 Kidmat Tziyon Settlement Scheme to be Expedited

 


8/4/2012 New East Jerusalem “Park” Soon to get Final Approval

 


8/4/2012 New Settlement in Beit Hanina?

 


8/4/2012 Israeli High Court Rejects Shepherd’s Hotel Appeal

 


14/3/2012 Will Arab & Muslim Leaders Start Coming to Jerusalem?


 


14/3/2012 A Major East Jerusalem Settlement Plan Comes Back to Life

 


14/3/2012 Spotlight on Jewish Access to the Temple Mount

 


14/3/2012 Volatility in Silwan: Mini-Intifada Continues, Cave-Ins, and New Settler Plans

 


9/1/2012 The Ongoing Settlement Surge in East Jerusalem

 


9/1/2012 The Mughrabi Gate Saga - Update

 


10/12/2011 Barkat Tries to Force Mughrabi Ramp Demolition

 


9/12/2011 Approval of Mount Scopus "Park" Proceeds

 


13/10/2011 Approval for New Israeli Settlement at Givat Hamatos Proceeds

 


12/10/2011 New Pisgat Ze'ev Building Permits

 


28/9/2011 New Settlement Approval issued for Gilo - Plan 13261

 


11/8/2011 More Jerusalem Settlement Approvals: Ramat Shlomo, Pisgat Zeev, Givat Hamatos

 


10/8/2011 Yet Another Har Homa Plan Approved (No. 12825) - Public Buildings, 50 Units

 


5/8/2011 Har Homa C Plan 10310 (app. 983 units) Approved

 


9/7/2011 Jerusalem Municipal "Approval" of Mordot Gilo Plan

 


9/7/2011 Meretz Rejoins Municipal Coalition - Separate Portfolios for EJ Settlers and Palestinians

 


20/6/2011 The Ramat Shlomo House Extension Plans

 


10/6/2011 Committee for Acceleration of (EJ) Construction to Convene on June 14

 


24/5/2011 Netanyahu Approves East Jerusalem Construction Hours Before Obama Address

 


24/5/2011 Barkat Trying to Force Netanyahu's Hand on Mughrabi Ramp

 


12/5/2011 The Non-Existent Court Decision on Bustan Demolitions

 


10/5/2011 New East Jerusalem Settlements Update

 


9/5/2011 US Supreme Court to Hear Jerusalem Status Case

 


21/4/2011 Is There a De Facto Settlement Freeze in East Jerusalem? The Facts

 


18/4/2011 April Surge in East Jerusalem Construction Plans

 


18/4/2011 Mount Scopus Slopes Park Approved for Public Review

 


16/3/2011 Permit Issued for 14 Units at Ras el Amud Police Station

 


16/3/2011 Permit Issued for Mughrabi Ramp

 

29/7/2013 A Layman's Guide to Jerusalem House Demolitions
Daniel Seidemann

 


29/7/2013 A Laymen's Guide to the Planning Process in Jerusalem.pdf
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20/3/2013 "Spatial Shaping", the Ross Agenda and a Partial Settlement Freeze
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10/3/2013 Spatial Shaping - Unilaterally Determining Israel’s Base-Line Border
Daniel Seidmann

 


10/9/2012 NOREF Policy Brief August 2012 | By Daniel Seidemann
Daniel Seidemann

 


30/1/2012 East Jerusalem and the Imminent Demise of the Two-State Solution
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7/11/2011 East Jerusalem Developments and Trends: 2006-2011
Daniel Seidemann

 


31/10/2011 The TJ Guide to the Planning and Construction Process in East Jerusalem - Oct. 2011
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15/10/2011 Givat Hamatos/Mordot Gilo: New Settlement Schemes on Jerusalem's Southern Flank
Daniel Seidemann

 


12/8/2011 U.S. (non)-Recognition of Sovereignty in Jerusalem: A Consistent Policy, 1948 - 2011
Lara Friedman

 


1/8/2011 Hanging On By Our Fingernails
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22/2/2011 Jerusalem Challenges the API
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21/2/2011 East Jerusalem settlers and Israel's never-ending War of Independence
Daniel Seidemann

 


20/2/2011 The Two Jerusalems
D. Seidemann D.Rothem

 


19/2/2011 Jerusalem on the Brink
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19/2/2011 A barely tolerated minority
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17/2/2011 Redeeming Jerusalem by truth, not hollow slogans
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16/2/2011 Jerusalem, settlements, and the "everybody knows" fallacy
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15/2/2011 Blogposts
Lara Friedman
 
 
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