J Street welcomes reports that Israel’s security cabinet has voted to authorize several new Palestinian construction projects in Area C of the West Bank. Authorization of Palestinian development has been extremely rare in the past few years, and in recent months, the Quartet, the US government and many others have called on Israel to take precisely such steps, which also have the strong support of Israel’s military establishment.
We would welcome far more of this kind of action, which allows the building of new homes, public buildings and an industrial zone, as well as a much-needed economic corridor between Jericho and Jordan. This is just one small example of the type of development that is needed to allow Palestinian communities to flourish and to provide the backbone for the creation of a viable Palestinian state.
While this decision is a positive step, for it to have serious effect, there must also be an end to the creeping annexation process that threatens Palestinian communities throughout Area C, and a serious commitment to finding a comprehensive political solution that includes the creation of a viable Palestinian state.