Israel's New Economic Measures for Palestinians Not Harming Israeli Interests


MOSCOW (Sputnik) — Media reported on Sunday, that Israel’s Security Cabinet of top ministers approved a series of measures for Palestinians proposed by the country’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, which included increasing the number of building permits to be issued for Palestinians living in Area C of the West Bank, which is under full Israeli control.

“This is a gesture for President Trump’s visit, which does not harm Israel’s interests. And the steps are all in the economic-civil sphere. There are no security measures or easing of security,” the source said adding that the measures did not change the core issues in the Israeli-Palestinian relations.

According to media reports, the approved package also includes opening the Allenby Bridge crossing between the West Bank and Jordan 24 hours a day and the development of some West Bank industrial zones. Israel’s Minister of Transport, National Infrastructures and Road Safety, Israel Katz, said the approval of the measures was based “on diplomatic considerations.”

Trump is scheduled to visit Israel and the West Bank on Monday and Tuesday for meetings with Netanyahu and Palestine’s leader Mahmoud Abbas as part of the US efforts to renew the direct talks between the two sides which had collapsed in 2014.

Over decades, Palestinians have been seeking diplomatic recognition for their independent state on the territories of the West Bank, including East Jerusalem, which are partially occupied by Israel, and the Gaza Strip. The Israeli government refuses to recognize Palestine as an independent political and diplomatic entity and continues to build settlements in the occupied areas, despite objections from the United Nations.

© Sputnik/ Vladimir Vyatkin

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