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Israel approves $11m for illegal settlements in occupied West Bank

Pisgat Ze'ev and Ramat Shlomo settlements in east and south Jerusalem, December 2016 [Daniel Bar On/Anadolu]
Pisgat Ze'ev and Ramat Shlomo settlements in east and south Jerusalem, December 2016 [Daniel Bar On/Anadolu]

Israel yesterday approved a budget of $11 million to fund illegal Jewish only settlements in the occupied West Bank, Haaretz reported.

The Cabinet’s decision came one day after Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu met with a group of extremist rabbis who requested settlements be given priority.

“Netanyahu met with the rabbis to seek their support against the backdrop of two police investigations that are being conducted against him,” Haaretz said.

The Israeli newspaper reported an official, who spoke on condition of anonymity, saying “that the resolution was only presented to the cabinet on Wednesday without prior notice, after Netanyahu’s meeting with the rabbis the day before.”

Read: Israel passes disputed law muzzling police on high-profile probes

 

“It was not entirely clear where the money would be going,” the source added.

Netanyahu is currently entangled in four political scandals: Case 1000 which involves allegations that the PM and his wife accepted illegal gifts from businessmen; Case 2000 which accuses Netanyahu of attempting to buy favourable newspaper coverage; Case 3000, also known as the “submarine scandal”; and Case 4000, in which a close associate of Netanyahu is suspected of providing confidential information to Israel’s largest telecoms company.

The prime minister’s wife, Sara Netanyahu, has also been accused of using public funds for private expenditure in the prime minister’s households. Only 20 per cent of respondents to the recent survey believe she is innocent.

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