***image1***In the past month, the expansion of settlements and related infrastructure has continued. Lands were confiscated in Nablus for the expansion of settler roads as well as for settlement expansion. Also in Nablus, five Palestinian homes were destroyed in the village of ‘Aqraba. Most recently, Occupation authorities authorized the construction of a new settlement in the Jordan Valley.
In April, a military order was issued to residents of Deir Sharaf, northwest of Nablus, for the confiscation of 10.9 dunums of land. This will be used for the construction of a new settler road linking Shavi Shomron with Road 60. The planned road will be 500 meters in width and will relocate the main entrance of the settlement.
Also in April, settlers from the Barakhla began expansion work on the settlement. They have occupied 250 dunums of land in the at-Tur mountain that belongs to eight local Palestinian farmers, who have been barred from their lands since the settlement was founded. Barakhala is located between the villages of Burin and ‘Iraq Burin, and residents face ongoing violence and terror at the hands of settlers.
In tandem with the settlement expansion, Occupation authorities issued demolition orders to eight families from ‘Aqraba village, southeast of Nablus, on 21 April. The next day soldiers, accompanied by wrecking crews, raided the village and and razed five of the homes, destroying their contents in the process.
Finally, several days ago it was announced that a new settlement construction is planned in the Jordan Valley. This will include 20 housing units in the Maskiyyot settlement. Maskiyyot was originally a military base that was designated in 2006 to house 120 settlers removed from the Gaza Strip. This plan was frozen in 2007 and restarted in 2008.