Israel advances plan for 9,000 homes in East Jerusalem in Atarot

The Jerusalem municipality advanced plans Wednesday for a 9,000-home project in Atarot, an area of ​​the city located on pre-1967 lines.
The international community and the Palestinian Authority have condemned the plan, which they warn would help cement Israel’s presence in an area of ​​the city they designated as the future capital of a Palestinian state.

They have also argued that the plan would drive a Jewish housing gap between existing Palestinian neighborhoods.

The city’s local planning committee gave its support to the project on Wednesday, ahead of the municipality’s District Planning Committee’s December 6 hearing on the matter.

The project would transform the 1,243 dunam site of the old Kalandia airport into a new neighborhood, complete with parks, hotels, public buildings, commercial areas and senior housing. It would retain the historic airport, which operated from 1924 to 2000.

Israeli soldiers stand guard as Israeli machines demolish a Palestinian building under construction in Bani Naim, near Hebron, in the West Bank, on March 8, 2021 (credit: MUSSA QAWASMA / REUTERS).

On Monday, a delegation of European Union officials visited the site. The EU representative to the Palestinian Authority, Sven Kuhn von Burgsdorff, said the plan jeopardized a possible two-state resolution to the conflict and helped separate Jerusalem from the West Bank.

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