PCBS: Rate of Settlement Construction Quadrupled Last Year

29.03.11 – 13:58 The Palestinian Central Bureau of Statistics revealed today that the rate of settlement construction in the West Bank has quadrupled over the past year.

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(PNN Archive)

In 2010 over 6,764 new housing units were added to existing settlements compared with 1,703 in 2009. According to the data the total number of settlements, outposts and military bases came to 470, “2010 saw the building of seven new outposts and the expansion of 141 sites, centering around the Jerusalem District where the number of settlements, settlers and built up areas in the Jerusalem area accounted for 23.7% of the total built up land in Israeli settlements. The data showed that about 51% of settlers live in the Jerusalem Governorate and the ratio of settlers to Palestinians in the West Bank is about 21 settlers for every 100 Palestinians. The highest ratio is in Jerusalem where there are about 71 settlers for every 100 Palestinians.”

The PCBS report said that there around 11.4 million people living in the historic land of Palestine in an estimated 27,000km2 where Jews account for 49.4% of the population and inhabit more than 85% of the total area of land.

The report added that, “the area of the Palestinian Territories isolated between the wall and the Green Line amounts to about 733km2 which accounts for around 13% of the West Bank, of which around 348km2 is agricultural land, 110km2 is uncultivated land and military bases and 250km is forest and open land in addition to 25km2 of built up Palestinian land.”
The report also noted the escalation of Israeli violations against Palestinians and their property in Jerusalem in 2010 with the authorities assigning about 1,496 dunams for the building of the wall and the expansion of settlements and issuing about a thousand edicts to evacuate homes in preparation for demolition. For example in 2010 the Bustan area in Silwan saw the demolition of 31 houses which were home to 224 Palestinians, 115 of them children.

The PalStat report comes on the eve of the 35th anniversary of Land Day commemorating the 1976 protest against the Israeli government designating thousands of dunams of land for “settlement and security purposes” and the subsequent violent crackdown by the Israeli authorities which killed six Palestinian youths.

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