RAMALLAH (Dispatches) – Palestinian Authority Foreign Ministry has denounced the Zionist regime’s recent settlement expansion as a "prelude" to imposing its sovereignty over the West Bank.
The ministry said in an emailed statement that the regime is escalating its settlement building activities, as one step further towards imposing its "full sovereignty over vast areas of the territories."
It accused the Zionist regime of attempting to kill any chances of achieving "peace” based and undermining the establishment of an independent Palestinian state.
Israeli media revealed that the regime’s municipality of al-Quds has approved two construction plans of building nearly 1,000 new settlement units in the city.
The Palestinians warned that the regime’s move would aggravate the situation by expanding occupation of the territories.
"Israeli authorities' approval of plans to open two new roads connecting isolated settlements that were built on lands privately owned by the Palestinians in the south and the north of the West Bank is part of its plan to seize control over West Bank ahead of annexing it," said Walid Assaf, head of the PA's Colonization and Settlement Resistance Committee.
Assaf warned that the road plans, which will come into effect early in June, will connect the large settlements in the north and the south of the West Bank and further isolate Palestinian villages there.
He noted that there were eight new settlements established by the occupying regime in 2018.
The left-wing group Peace Now reported on Tuesday that spending on West Bank settlements spiked by 39% in 2017, the first year U.S. President Donald Trump was in office.
Peace Now issued the data as part of a larger report it published on West Bank settlements in the decade of Zionist Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s rule.
Netanyahu’s support for the settlement enterprise is believed to have been reigned in by former democratic U.S. president Barack Obama, who was in office from January 2009 to January 2017.
Trump is perceived to be supportive of the settlements in Judea and Samaria. But the jump in spending had actually begun the prior year, 2016 under Obama.