JERUSALEM (AA) – The Israeli government has advanced plans to build 251 settlement units in the occupied West Bank, according to a Palestinian official on Sunday.
The plans were approved by the High Planning Committee of the Israeli Civil Administration, a body responsible for authorizing settlement building.
"The committee approved the construction of 146 housing units in Gush Etzion settlement, south of Bethlehem city, while 105 settlement homes will be built in Kfar Al-dad east of the city," Hassan Bureijia, head of the Committee Against the Wall and Settlements in Bethlehem, said in a statement.
Roughly 650,000 Israeli Jews currently live on more than 100 settlements built since 1967, when Israel occupied the West Bank and East Jerusalem.
The Palestinians want these territories -- along with the Gaza Strip -- for the establishment of a future Palestinian state.
International law views both the West Bank and East Jerusalem as "occupied territories" and considers all Jewish settlement-building activity there as illegal.