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New Israeli government plan to connect illegal settlements with cities

The Israeli transportation ministry is preparing a plan to develop the network of settler-only roads in the occupied Palestinian West Bank, Quds Press reported on Tuesday.

"It is a large project and it will cost the Israeli government about 850 million shekels ($225m)," Transportation Minister Yisrael Katz told local television.

Katz noted that the new project would give a big push for the development of the Jewish settlements in the occupied West Bank and Jerusalem, similar to what is happening with the road network for the settlements in Galilee in the north of Israel and the Negev in the south.

"The project will meet the expectation of the rising birth rate of the Jewish community, as well as the rising living standards and the increasing use of cars," explained the minister. "It will include tunnels, subways, roundabouts, highways and a light rail network."

He pointed out that the project is aimed at connecting the Jewish settlements in the occupied West Bank with mega cities like Tel Aviv and Jerusalem.

All of Israel's colony-settlements in the occupied Palestinian territories are regarded as illegal under international law.

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