HEBRON (Ma'an) -- The infrastructure for four illegal outposts is being constructed around the West Bank city of Hebron, a settlement affairs expert said Thursday.
In an interview with Ma'an Radio, Abed Al-Hadi Hantash said the outposts would be integrated to form a new settlement, which would be linked with Kiryat Arba, the largest settlement in the district.
Combined, the settlements would constitute a third of the city of Hebron, which is already surrounded by illegal settlements, Hantash said. The new project would confiscate a further 15 square kilometers of Palestinian land from Hebron's borders, he said, and is being funded by a Jewish society which supports settlement activity in the West Bank city.
The construction of a new school and kindergarten began earlier this week in illegal outposts in Hebron. Further, a road leading from Kiryat Arba to the Ibrahimi Mosque, which would cut through Jaber neighborhood in the Old City, was also approved. The road's construction would put Palestinians at risk of eviction, Hantash said.
Hantash said he was astonished at the Palestinian handling of the settlement issue, which focused on individual violations and failed to pay attention to the slow and systematic process by which settlements are taking over control of the heart of Hebron.