Btselem will publish this report tomorrow,
Chapter 1: Data on the settlements
Chapter 2: Israeli policy
Chapter 3: Mechanisms for taking control of West Bank land and illegal
construction in settlements
Chapter 4: Benefits and economic incentives to settlers and settlements
Chapter 5: The settlements in international law and violations of Palestinian
human rights in the West Bank
The establishment of the settlements is illegal. In spite of this, as of mid?2010, more than 42 percent of West Bank land has been allocated to the establishment of over 200 settlements as well as the neighborhoods in the areas annexed to the Jerusalem municipal borders. At the same time, Israel offered a long list of generous benefits and incentives to encourage some half a million Israelis to relocate to these settlements. This process has led to broad and significant changes in the landscape of the West Bank.
Throughout the years of Israel’s occupation of the West Bank, regardless of changes of governments, the settlement enterprise has been promoted. Its main objective has been, and still is, to take control of as much land as possible in the West Bank for the purpose of establishing and expanding settlements. The settlement enterprise has divided and separated the areas under Palestinian control, turning them into disconnected enclaves and blurring the border between Israel and the West Bank.
While developing the settlement enterprise, Israel also established and institutionalized two separate legal systems in the West Bank: one for settlers, which de facto annexes the settlements and grants their residents all the rights accorded to citizens of a democratic country; and the other, a military judicial system that systematically violates the rights of Palestinians and denies them any real power in shaping the policies that influence their lives and rights. These separate legal systems entrench a regime in which a person’s rights are granted based on his or her national identity.
The development and strengthening of the settlement enterprise during the last four decades has created a new spatial?geographical, economic and legal reality throughout the West Bank. This, in turn, generates a continuous breach of Palestinian human rights, first and foremost the right of property, which is manifested in the seizure of hundreds of thousands of dunam of land from Palestinians and the usurping of personal property of Palestinian communities and individuals, all on various pretexts and by diverse means. The existence of the settlements also infringes the Palestinians’ rights to an adequate standard of living, freedom of movement, equality, and selfdetermination.
The settlement enterprise has been characterized, since its inception, by an instrumental, cynical, and even criminal attitude toward international law, local legislation, Israeli military orders,