Palestinian land grab continues near historic Sebastia

The Palestinian Authority has begun paving another illegal road in Area C of the Samaria region.

Palestinian workers have moved heavy equipment near the old Turkish railway station of Sebastia in Samaria and have begun paving a road there although it is illegal, as it is in Area C where Israel retains full control.

Regavim, an organization dedicated to ensuring legal and accountable use of Israel’s national lands, discovered the illegal activity as part of its monitoring efforts of illegal Arab construction in Jerusalem, the Negev and Galilee. According to the organization, this isn’t the first time that the Palestinians have tried to create “facts on the ground” in this area. The Civil Administration was warned a year and a half ago about a road being paved in the compound towards the town of Burka. In 2013, it was told that illegal housing was being constructed. To date, no demolition orders have been carried out.

“As far as we know, this is a clear and deliberate attempt at a takeover by the Palestinian Authority (PA), which is trying to push the Israeli presence away from this site,” a Regavim statement said. “The Civil Administration must wake up, protect state lands and put enforcement and supervision measures in place before one of the great symbols of our settlement is no longer ours.”

Illegal road construction is nothing new to the PA. In June of this year, it was reported that a 5-kilometer long road was being paved in the South Hebron Hills, straight through an old IDF firing range where twelve illegal Palestinian shanty towns had been set up. In 2016, an unauthorized road was built in Rawabi, a new Palestinian city. Although the city is in Area B, the road itself was on land in Area C.

By: Batya Jerenberg, World Israel News