Israel has begun the construction of 114 new housing units in the Al-Khader neighbourhood of the southern West Bank city of Bethlehem.
An Israeli decision to commence construction in the area was issued two months ago.
The organiser of the Popular Committee against the Israeli Wall in Al-Khader, Ahmed Salah, told Quds Press that "the bulldozers of the Israeli occupation started working in the Mountain of Maasi to prepare for building a new settlement."
Salah said that the Israeli government had decided to convert 50 illegal makeshift constructions built by Israeli settlers on 500 dunams of land into a new settlement by building 114 housing units.
According to Salah, the land consists of farms belonging to Palestinian families living in the nearby areas.
The settlers barred Palestinians from access to their farms and set up their makeshift homes in 2000.