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Israel to accelerate settlement building fearing possible freeze by Biden

A picture taken on June 30, 2020 from the West Bank village of al-Khader near the biblical town of Bethlehem shows the illegal Israeli settlement of Efrat [HAZEM BADER/AFP via Getty Images]
An Israeli settlement in the West Bank on 30 June 2020 [HAZEM BADER/AFP via Getty Images]

Israeli occupation authorities have ordered preparations for expediting settlement construction before a possible freeze by President-elect Joe Biden upon entering the White House, Israeli media has revealed.

As vice president, Israeli daily Haaretz reported, Biden had a crucial role in suspending new construction in the Israeli Jewish settlements of the occupied West Bank.

Therefore, according to Haaretz, Israel is expecting that Biden will oppose the expansion of settlements, which he has already referred to as "an obstacle to peace".

AP reported Martin Indyk, a former US peace negotiator during the Clinton and Obama administrations, claiming that the Israeli-Palestinian conflict is no longer a "vital national interest" for the US, expecting that Biden would not make it a priority.

"I don't think he's going to want to have a fight over settlements," Indyk predicts. "But if Bibi (Netanyahu) makes it an issue, then there will be a problem there."

READ: Peace Now: Netanyahu used Trump's time in office to advance settlements

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