More housing units are being built in the West bank than in any other areas in Israel, even after the government's decision to freeze construction in the settlements, claimed Left wing organization Peace Now during a Wednesday press conference in Jerusalem, as part of a counter assault on the settlers campaign against the freeze.
The organization formed an informant hotline that allows citizens to report on violations of the freeze order.
Meanwhile, a massive protest organized by the settlers is slated to take place Wednesday night in Jerusalem.
According to data published by the Central Bureau of Statistics last week, a decrease of %27.6 was recorded in the number of construction work between January and September, in comparison with only a 3% decrease in construction projects throughout the country.
Despite this data, Peace Now claims that the number of construction projects in the West Bank is considerably larger compared with other areas.
According to the data presented by Peace Now, during the construction freeze implemented by the cabinet, 3,492 housing units are still being built in the West Bank (492 of which were approved last summer, and 3,000 were approved beforehand and are in the midst of construction).
Considering that there are some 300,000 settlers living in the West Bank, Peace Now claims the ratio stands at 1,162 housing units per 100,000 residents, compared with data collected by the Central Bureau of Statistics, according to which the average number during the announcement of the construction freeze was 836 housing units per 100,000 residents.
Peace now focused on presenting specific data comparing construction taking place in West Bank settlements with that taking place in towns within the Green Line.
During the freeze, 476 housing units will be constructed in the town of Ma'ale Edumim, located beyond the Green Line, compared with similar sized towns within the Green Line, such as Rosh Haayin (149 housing units), Kiryat Bialik (160 housing units), Dimona (59 housing units) and Or Yehuda (12 housing units).
Fake foundations in settlement of Oranit
Further data shows 146 housing units will be built in the city of Ariel, also located in the West Bank, compared with only 21 housing units in Beit Shean, 51 units in Kiryat Tivon and 32 units in Sderot.
Peace Now also claimed religious towns are being discriminated against – while 860 housing units are being built in Modiin Ilit, located beyond the Green Line, only 73 units are slated for the haredi city of Elad.
New concrete foundation in Adam settlement
Special violations hotline
"There is no truth in settlers claim of discrimination and injustice," Secretary-General of Peace Now Yariv Oppenheimer told Ynet, adding that there have been dozens of reports in at least eight different settlements where "pseudo foundations" were places as a desperate attempt to thwart the freeze order.
Peace Now further claimed freeze order violations were recorded in at least ten settlements, while the committee established by Defense Minister Ehud Barak to deal with unusual cases continues to approve these projects away from the public's eye.
Following requests made by settlers and soldiers who expressed "aversion" to the behavior of local councils' heads and leaders of the struggle against the freeze, Peace Now opened a special hotline where people can report any building violations. The hotline can be reached at: 1700-70-1967
Peace Now also reiterated that aerial shots of settlements and illegal outposts were being taken in order to create a public database that will help detect any new constructions, and that any violations will be reported directly to the responsible authorities.