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Israel freezes settlement project that outraged US

Heavy machines are seen at Jerusalem International Airport also known as Atarot in Jerusalem on 25 November 2021. [Mostafa Alkharouf - Anadolu Agency]
Heavy machines are seen at Jerusalem International Airport also known as Atarot in Jerusalem on 25 November 2021. [Mostafa Alkharouf - Anadolu Agency]

The Israeli occupation Municipality of Jerusalem yesterday froze plans to build a large Jewish-only settlement on the land of an old Palestinian airport in occupied East Jerusalem, local media reported.

According to the Times of Israel, the team at the Israeli Jerusalem District Planning Committee was convened in order to prepare the plan for the final approval of the Atarot settlement project which had angered the US administration.

However, the team concluded that a survey would be conducted to determine the environmental impact of the project, which is due to be made up of 9,000 settlement units. This is expected to take a year.

The US considered this project damaging to the peace process due to its magnitude and intended location in the heart of a Palestinian population centre, Ynet News said.

"Let's hope they will use the time to understand how illogical this plan is for the development of Jerusalem and how much it damages the chances for peace," Hagit Ofran from the Israeli NGO Peace Now said yesterday.

READ: Israel wants to isolate Jerusalem from the West Bank

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