Five largest Israeli settlements: who lives there, and why
The end goal of the current Israeli-Palestinian peace talks is two separate, sovereign states. Palestinians say that the expansion of Israeli settlements in the West Bank, deemed illegal by the UN, influence the outcome of such talks. Here are the five most populous Israeli settlements in the West Bank.
3. Betar Illit
Founded in 1985
Betar Illit is situated about six miles south of Jerusalem and west of Bethlehem, and is located less than a kilometer within the Palestinian side of the Green Line. It is an Orthodox Jewish community with one of the fastest-growing populations in the West Bank. Because much of the population is engaged in religious study, rather than employed in nearby cities, it is relatively self contained. Betar Illit is often considered part of the Gush Etzion settlement bloc.