West Bank settlements: 3 factors affecting the pace of Israeli expansion

West Bank settlements were under a 10-month Israeli construction freeze which expired Sunday night, putting peace talks between Israel and the Palestinian Authority at risk. Here is a breakdown of where and when settlement expansion is happening.

Immediate construction – 2,000+

Nir Elias/Reuters
Construction vehicles prepare the ground as building of a housing project resumes in the West Bank Jewish settlement of Ariel, Israel, on Sept. 27.

Many construction projects were under way when Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu announced a 10-month settlement freeze in November 2009. With government approval and foundations poured in may cases, these projects will be the first to resume now.

According to the left-wing Israeli organization Peace Now, there are 2,066 partially completed homes spread out across 42 settlements, though most are in larger settlements near the Green Line.

The settlements with the most units cleared for immediate construction are:

  • Givat Zeev: 300 units
  • Modiin Illit: 260 units
  • Beitar Illit: 150 units
  • Har Gilo: 138 units
  • Ariel: 136 units

Five largest Israeli settlements: who lives there, and why

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