Daily Israel Report

PA Will Go to UN Security Council on Jerusalem Housing Plan

The Palestinian Authority says it will file a complaint with the UN Security Council over movement in plans for housing in Jerusalem.
By Chana Ya'ar
First Publish: 12/17/2012, 10:33 PM

Construction (illustrative)
Construction (illustrative)
Flash 90

The Palestinian Authority said Monday night it will file a complaint with the United Nations Security Council over progress in plans for a housing project in Jerusalem's Ramat Shlomo neighborhood.

PA officials denounced the decision by Israel's Interior Ministry to tell developers they must resubmit the plan for “final approval,” reduced by 100 units.

The plan authorized by Interior Minister Eli Yishai in August 2011 called for construction of 1,600 housing units. But after the ministry's planning committee heard objections at a public meeting held Monday, developers were told they must reduce the number by 100, and make other adjustments before resubmitting the plan for “final approval.”

The process, which has already dragged on for years, could take months – or even years – longer, ministry spokesperson Efrat Orbach pointed out to AFP.

But Abbas spokesman Nabil Abu Rudaineh called the committee's decision a “blatant challenge” to the international community and a “disregard for the feelings of the Palestinian people and Arab nation.”

Upon its authorization in 2011, the housing plan was quietly shelved until its revival two weeks ago, after the U.N. General Assembly granted de facto recognition to the PA as a sovereign state by approving a resolution granting the entity an upgraded status as a nonmember observer state.

Abu Rudaineh  claimed that Monday's decision by the ministry's planning committee would further isolate Israel “after the whole world... recognized the Palestinian state in the 1967 borders.”

The reference is to the 1949 Armistice Line, which was to be a temporary border until a permanent peace was negotiated with hostile Arab nations surrounding the Jewish State. In the 1967 Six Day War, the IDF restored the parts of Jerusalem that were wrenched away by the Jordanian army during the prior conflict, along with conquering the Jordanian-occupied Judea, Samaria and Gaza.