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One Quarter of Settlements Breached Freeze, Security Ministry Acknowleges.

In response to the parliamentary question posed by MK Haim Oron (Meretz) the Israeli Deputy Security Minister Matan Vilnai admitted that 29 settlements breached the settlement freeze order.<p>Peace Now has recorded at least 5 additional settlements (not included in the list provided by the Deputy Ministry of Security) in which violations of the freeze were documented.

The freeze order published on November 26, 2009 prohibited any new construction in the settlements, but allowed the continuation of construction in the cases where foundation work had already begun.

In the majority of settlements construction work is taking place daily, but only works that begun after the order was published are considered a violation of the freeze.

Peace Now has documented at least 14 cases where new foundations were laid after the freeze announcement. It should be noted that these cases are all documented cases with the settlers caught in the act. Some violations were also discovered by the Defense Ministry as indicated in the response by the Deputy Security Minister to MK Haim Oron (see the complete list below).

Peace Now discovered that in some of the settlements construction work was being carried out on Saturdays (Shabbat), for example in Talmon and Neria.

Despite the freeze, the Israeli Housing Ministry gave approval to contractors who had won the bid for new construction in the settlement of Beitar Illit, to start selling the apartments that have not yet been built.

In a conversation with Peace Now contracting company admitted that they believe the construction will start, despite the freeze, as the Housing Ministry allowed the selling to take place.

Security Ministry List of Settlements that have breached the Settlement Freeze: Adam (Geva Binyamin), Oranit, Elon More, Alfei Menashe, Elkana, Beit Arie, Beitar Illit, Barkan, Givat Ze'ev (listed twice at the list), Har Gilo, Talmon, Yakir, Kfar Eldad (Nokdim, Kfar Etzion, Ma'ale Adumim, Ma'ale Shomron, Matityahu, Nokdim, Imanuel, Etz Efrayim, Psagot, Zufim, Kedumim, Rosh Zurim, Revava, Shadmot Mechola, Sha'arei Tikva and Tqo'a.

Peace Now List of Additional Settlements Were Violations were recorded: Elazar, Kochav Hashahar, Nili, Kiryat Arba and Tapuach.

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Publication:Palestine News Agency (WAFA) (Gaza, Palestine)
Date:Feb 15, 2010
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