55% of Illegal Israeli Settlers in Jerusalem al-Quds

On the anniversary of the Land Day, the Palestinian Central Bureau of Statistics announces that more than 85% of Palestinian land remains under Israeli control, adding that 55% of illegal settlers reside in Jerusalem (al-Quds).

In a press statement issued on Tuesday, the Bureau stated that according to statistics, the number of outposts, settlements and military bases in the West Bank stood at 440, with the highest number of settlers located in Jerusalem (al-Quds).

According to the statement, the number of Israelis living in illegal settlements in the Jerusalem (al-Quds) governorate — such as the Gilo settlement near Beit Lahm (Bethlehem) — has reached 261,885. Some 198,458 of such illegal settlers live in East Jerusalem (al-Quds) settlements.

In addition, some 23,100 housing units have been destroyed in the occupied Palestinian territory in the West Bank and Gaza Strip between 1967 and 2008.

According to a study conducted by The Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO), some 13,400 housing units from a total of 23,100 were destroyed between 2000 and the end of May 2009 in the West Bank and Gaza Strip.

These figures, however, do not include "more than 4,100 housing units completely destroyed and about 17,000 buildings destroyed partially in the Gaza Strip during the recent aggression on Gaza Strip in December 2008."

According to United Nation’s estimates, there are currently 60,000 Palestinians in East Jerusalem (al-Quds) living in buildings threatened with demolition.

The statement added that approximately $50 million in fines have been handed down to Palestinian residents between 2004 and 2008, restricting their ability to construct in Jerusalem (al-Quds).

"Israeli authorities have not only continued their occupation policies of racism toward the Palestinians through the confiscation of identity cards and demolition of houses, but sought in every possible way to restrict the issuance of building permits for the Palestinians."

(Press TV)

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