No Plans to Limit Settlement Construction for Now
Despite the change of administration in Washington, Israel’s settlement building policies will remain largely unchanged, an Israeli government official said on Wednesday, September 1.
The official said that Prime Minister Naftali Bennett’s new government will operate based on the understandings his predecessor Benjamin Netanyahu reached with former President Donald Trump, whose administration allowed for Israel to continue building in settlements across Judea and Samaria, so long as the construction did not expand beyond communities’ “existing footprints.”
This agreement allowed settlement building to skyrocket during the Trump era, with approved projects beyond the Green Line more than doubling compared to former President Barack Obama’s second term.
“The (Trump-era) understanding may well be adapted, but as of now, it is still the only game in town,” the official said. “President Biden only spoke generally about his opposition to settlement building, and his team has not gotten into specifics with us.”
The official said that Bennett is aware of the issue’s sensitivity and acted to delay the convening of the Defense Ministry body that approves settlement construction in order for it not to coincide with his visit to Washington last week. (TOI / VFI News)
For everything there is a season, and a time for every matter under heaven. - Ecclesiastes 3:1