Ali Waked
June 29, 2009 - 12:00am,7340,L-3738636,00.html

The Palestinian Authority is livid with Israel's decision to build 50 new housing units in the West Bank settlement of Adam. The new units are intended to house the current residents of the illegal outpost of Migron, who will need to be relocated when the outpost is evacuated.

"This decision destroys the political process," Palestinian Minister for Jerusalem Affairs, Abd al-Qadir, told Ynet on Monday after the move was announced. Al-Qadir said this proves Israel is ignoring US pressure to cease all construction in the settlements. Israel maintains that 'natural growth,' meaning building within the boundaries of existing settlements to allow for population growth, was sanctioned by Washington as part of the Road Map.

Al-Qadir however, said the plan "destroys any chance for real peace. In light of this policy, there is no chance for Abu-Mazen (Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas) and (Prime Minister Benjamin) Netanyahu to sit at the negotiations table. The Palestinian leadership has decided that there will be no negotiations while building in the settlements continues."

The decision, he says, "proves that Israel doesn't give a damn about the American pressure."

Al-Qadir slammed the natural growth claim as "one big lie. No natural growth explains this much building. This is new construction and the Israelis are making clear that they are not interested in negotiations."
The State informed the High Court of Justice earlier Monday that the Defense Ministry has granted permits for the construction of 50 housing units in Adam.

The ministry's permit allocation, however, contradicts its previous consent to build 1,450 housing units in the area. The State claimed that the number of permits issued now corresponds with the number of settlers in Migron.

Yesha Council Chairman Danny Dayan: "The State's brief to the High Court reflects the understandings reached with the Defense Ministry and former Prime Minister Ehud Olmert's government. We stand by our commitment and the State should so the same."


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