Israel to Retroactively Legalize Settlements on Private Palestinian Land

Officials Aim to Allow Further Construction in Massive Settlement

In a move which Israeli officials say would allow the massive settlement of Ofra to grow even further, they informed the High Court that they intend to retroactively legalize all homes within the settlement, including those built illegally on privately held Palestinian land.

In 2005 the Israeli government announced that it would only approve construction in settlements if it came within legally defined jurisdictions for those settlements. It seems now, however, that those that don’t will simply be redefined.

It is also expected to spark more lawsuits by the actual owners of the land, as one lawyer representing the Palestinian families said it showed that the settlers only ever purchased a small portion of the land they have taken, and the rest was “just looted from their owners.”

Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is senior editor of