A group of Israeli settlers have turned a deserted army military base in the Jordan Valley into an illegal settlement, Haaretz reported yesterday.
Twelve Jewish families moved in to the six buildings at the base which was once called Gadi near Highway 90.
Rights groups had previously warned that settlers could turn this abandoned post in to an illegal settlement and appealed the Supreme Court to stop this from happening. However the Regional Settlement Council denied that there were any plans for such a move.
Haaretz said the military base is located in an area which has been claimed as a state land, noting that the settlers set up gates at the base and assigned a security guard to guard it.
According to the Israeli newspaper, the settlers have built 14 settlements in the occupied West Bank since 2011 with “quiet” support from the government.
This year, Israel turned a number of military bases in the occupied West Bank into settlements, mainly in the Jordan Valley, including many built on private Palestinian land.
Such actions consolidate Israel’s control over the Jordan Valley, rights groups have warned.