Israel approves largest West Bank settlements in 25 years

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Imagine the dilemma that Israel would have faced if it had withdrawn - only to face the prospect of ISIS-affiliated Islamic militias just above the eastern shore of the Sea of Galilee.

Lieberman told journalists and ministers at the start of a cabinet meeting that, so far this year, plans had been advanced for 8,345 homes in the occupied West Bank, including 3,066 slated for "immediate construction".

Israel pushed forward with the plans as it also marked 50 years since the Six-Day War, fought from June 5-10, 1967 and which began its continuing occupation of the West Bank.

In a statement made earlier today, Israeli Ambassador to the UN Danny Danon demanded that the UN agency remove the ad immediately.

The Israeli media have been celebrating the "reunification".

Lieberman said "I am aware more than anyone else of the construction needs in the settlements, and I am also well aware of the restrictions and the pressure that come from the global political community", he said. Many Israelis would even call it the "liberation" of the eastern part of the city.

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Bennett reminded the naysayers that while they may disagree with his conclusion, most Israelis do not. These payments, amounting to more than NIS 1.1 billion ($350 million) per year, are funneled through the Palestinian Authority Martyrs' Fund which in 2014 was transferred to the PLO in an attempt to divert criticism.

And when we talk about Jerusalem's importance for the Jewish people, where are we talking about?

The United Nations Office for Project Services (UNOPS) published a classified ad on its website today offering a project management position located in "Jerusalem, the State of Palestine". Forces also detained three freed prisoners from al-Jalazoon refugee camp for trying to enter Jerusalem without entry permits.

Israel would later sign historic peace agreements with Egypt and Jordan, but to this day its conflict with the Palestinians remains unresolved.

Cliff Savren is a former Clevelander who covers the Middle East for the Cleveland Jewish News from Ra'anana, Israel.

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