“This is a destructive plan that, if implemented, will fatally block the possibility of creating territorial contiguity between east Jerusalem and Bethlehem,” Peace Now wrote in a letter.
Peace Now on Sunday urged Alternative Prime Minister Benny Gantz and Foreign Minister Gabi Ashkenazi to put a halt to the controversial east Jerusalem Jewish GIVAT HAMATOS housing project before it destroyed any possibility of a two-state resolution to the conflict.

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IsraelN.com Comments:

This is major news.

Givat Hamatos was quietly given a green light for an open bid for 1077 apartments.  The final issueing will be publicized in early September.

Also, another even more strategic area (E1), slated for nearly 4000 units, will complete its "opposition period" on Aug 18.  This means that following this date, it is a matter of procedures and time until bids are issued for that project as well.

It appears that Bibi used the ongoing coalition talks, and declarations of annexation, as a smokescreen to promote these very two vital projects for Jerusalem.

15 EU member countries and the UK voiced strong opposition to these plans.

The implication is that there will no longer be any possibility of contiguous Arab urban construction, since these two projects fill in the holes, and create a permanent separation of Judea-Samaria (ie. Bethlehem - Beit Jala link to the Arab areas adjacent to Har Homa and East Talpiot) will be blocked by the Givat Hamatos neighborhood.

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