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Israel to start excavation works for cable cars in occupied East Jerusalem

A picture taken on June 21, 2020, shows a view of a cable car overlooking the West Bank city of Jericho. - When Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu unveiled a map of his plans in September, he pointed to a long blue zone to be annexed, leaving a brown speck in the middle: Jericho. Now the city's farmers in the occupied West Bank fear being marooned on a scrap of Palestinian land if Israel forges ahead with its plans to annex the Jordan Valley. (Photo by ABBAS MOMANI / AFP) (Photo by ABBAS MOMANI/AFP via Getty Images)
A picture taken on June 21, 2020, shows a view of a cable car overlooking the West Bank city of Jericho [ABBAS MOMANI/AFP via Getty Images]

The construction of a controversial cable car will start as Israeli authorities are preparing the excavation works in occupied East Jerusalem, despite an outcry from Palestinians.

According to the Times of Israel, Project Director Shmulik Tzabari stated excavation will start by mid-November.

Last week, the Jerusalem Development Authority, which is responsible for implementing the cable car project, approved the uprooting of trees on Mount Zion, and for infrastructure including water, sewage and telecommunications to be displaced from the planned path of the cable car.

The 1.4-kilometre-long cable car line will shuttle some 3,000 tourists and worshippers per hour from Jerusalem's western part to the eastern Old City in a four-minute ride.

READ: Israel to build new town near Gaza

The ride will end up at the Kedem "visitor centre" in Silwan, a Palestinian neighbourhood where the settler presence has intensified in recent times, amid evictions of Palestinians and a repressive presence from occupation forces.

Palestinians in Silwan warn that the project will encourage tourists to bypass them on the way to holy sites.

Israel occupied East Jerusalem in the 1967 Six-Day War and later annexed it, claiming the entire city as their capital in a move not recognised by the international community.

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