New Jewish Settlement on Awarta Land

NABLUS, April 21, 2011 (WAFA) – Jewish settlers Wednesday night began building a new settlement on land belonging to Awarta, a village southeast of Nablus, according to local sources.

Ghassan Daghlas, the Palestinian Authority official monitoring settlers’ activity in the northern West Bank, confirmed that about five hundred settlers gathered on the hills facing the Itamar settlement, illegally constructed on land belonging to Awarta, and placed the cornerstone for the new “Regev” settlement.

Daniella Weiss, veteran settlement leader, said “idealistic people are joining us… people with a strong feeling for the land of Israel,” according to Haaretz.

Head of Awarta village council, Qais Awwad said the settlers began preparing the infrastructure for the settlement early this morning, paving roads and erecting electricity poles with Israeli flags on them.

Awarta has faced weeks of harassment by Israeli forces in the wake of the March 11 killing of 5 settlers from Itamar village.

The establishment of the settlement also reflects the increasing movement by settlers in the West Bank in the months leading up to the expected September declaration of the Palestinian state.

In a press statement, Israeli organization Rabbis for Human Rights condemned the establishment of this settlement and said this will lead to disruption of stability in the area. It demanded the Israeli government to stop the policy of confiscating land and expanding settlements.

F.J.

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