Press Release
Contact Information: Hussein Ibish
February 4, 2009 - 1:00am

Washington, DC, Feb. 4 – The American Task Force on Palestine (ATFP) today warned that plans for a new Israeli settlement in the West Bank poses a serious threat to progress towards a peace agreement. The proposed new settlement in the so-called “Binyamin region” of the occupied West Bank is located to the east of the separation barrier and would violate both Israel’s Roadmap obligations and commitments by former Prime Minister Ariel Sharon to former US President George W. Bush. The new settlement, which has reportedly been approved by Israeli Defense Minister Ehud Barak would initially resettle settlers from the unauthorized settlement called Migron. Last week the Israeli newspaper Ha’aretz revealed a secret Defense Ministry report on settlement activity that found that “in more than 30 settlements, extensive construction of buildings and infrastructure (roads, schools, synagogues, yeshivas and even police stations) has been carried out on private lands belonging to Palestinian West Bank residents” and that the actual scope and nature of settlement activity is not reflected in official Israeli government statistics.

ATFP President Ziad J. Asali said, “we are dismayed that the Israeli government is persisting with creating new settlements that it knows full well are the main obstacle to achieving an end-of-conflict agreement.” “Israel has clear obligations under the Roadmap, and many other instruments of international law including countless Security Council resolutions, not to continue to build or expand these illegal settlements,” he continued. Dr. Asali called on President Barack Obama and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton to use all the influence of the United States to ensure that the planned new settlement is not constructed and that Israel abides by its Roadmap obligations.


American Task Force on Palestine - 1634 Eye St. NW, Suite 725, Washington DC 20006 - Telephone: 202-262-0017