Israeli plan to set up new settlement city in West Bank

Israeli occupation authorities are planning to set up new large settlement city on the western borders of the occupied West Bank, Israeli media reports reported on Wednesday.

According to Quds Press, the Israeli news website 0404 revealed that a special committee was assigned by the Israeli interior ministry six months ago to prepare for the plan.

The committee offered its recommendations on Wednesday, the Israeli site said, noting that the committee recommended bringing a number of settlements together to create a large settlement city applicable for expansion.

According to the news website, the settlements in question are Oranit, south of Qalqilia, Sheari Tikva, in the east, Etz Efraim, in the villages of Qalqilia and Elkana in the west of Salfit.

Bringing these settlements together means including all the areas between them, where it had previously been impossible to construct. Practically, this means expanding these settlements, the Israeli website commented, noting that up to $30m will be invested in the development of the new ‘city’.

Read: Israel legalises confiscating private Palestinian land for settlement use

As part of the recommendation, the committee said that these settlements cost much money as each one of them has its own municipal council, but when brought together, they would constitute only one council and thus cutting the costs.

This plan, the website said, was proposed several years ago and each time it was postponed; if approved, it would be the first settlement city in 20 years.

#LandGrab

Quds Press said that the Israeli website referred to the settlement of Ariel, in the south of Nablus, as the last settlement city, which includes a university, culture centre and mall.

Tzipi Hotovely, the deputy Israeli foreign minister, said that uniting the four settlements and turning them into one city is a “needed right step,” noting it is a clear message to the whole world that settlements are expanding.

Funding for Settlements - Cartoon [Sarwar Ahmed/MiddleEastMonitor]

Funding for Settlements – Cartoon [Sarwar Ahmed/MiddleEastMonitor]

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Euro Area Inflation Unexpectedly Misses Despite Sliding Unemployment

The euro stumbled, dropping to session lows on Thursday after Eurostat reported that despite a welcome decline in Europe's unemployment rate to 8.8%, the lowest level in 9 years, Eurozone inflation missed expectations, rising from 1.4% to 1.5%, below the 1.6% consensus expectations, reminding the ECB that Phillips curves around the globe remain broken and that its intention to taper QE and tighten monetary policy may yet be derailed.

Looking at the main components of euro area inflation, energy is expected to have the highest annual rate in November (4.7%, compared with 3.0% in October), followed by food, alcohol & tobacco (2.2%, compared with 2.3% in October), services (1.2%, stable compared with October) and non-energy industrial goods (0.4%, stable compared with October).

European core inflation (excluding food, energy and tobacco) remained unchanged at 0.9% in November, below the 1% median estimate by economists. The euro traded lower after the report, and was at $1.1829 at 11:44 a.m in Frankfurt.

Indeed, as Bloomberg reports, the latest price data "outline the dilemma facing the ECB." and even with the region’s economy set for the fastest growth in a decade and the most broad-based expansion since 1997, a sustained price recovery remains some way off. While policy makers have acknowledged that this development warrants less additional monetary support, ECB President Mario Draghi has advocated a “patient and persistent” approach to exiting the central bank’s stimulus program.

Despite inflation consistently undershooting expectations, policy makers have expressed confidence that economic growth and falling unemployment will eventually feed through to prices. "The solid and broad-based economic recovery in the euro area is continuing,” ECB Executive Board member Peter Praet said on Thursday in Brussels. “The breadth of the expansion is notable.” Despite

“All indications are that the recovery will continue for longer, and that would put pressure on wages and prices going forward,” Vitor Constancio said in an interview with Bloomberg Television on Wednesday. “It’s a gradual process, but we see it going in that direction.”

Governing Council members Jens Weidmann and Klaas Knot on Wednesday called for a more a decisive acknowledgment of the strengthening of the economy. “Evidence is mounting the economic outlook will be at least as good as previously forecast, if not even better,” Bundesbank President Weidmann said. “This development should continue for a while.”

Still the latest data means that when the ECB’s Governing Council next meets on Dec. 14, it will be faced once again with a picture of solid economic growth and subdued prices pressures. Policy makers announced in October that they will halve its current monthly pace of bond buying starting January and running until at least September.

“Absent deflation risk, a full phasing-out of net asset purchases from September 2018 onward is warranted,” Knot said in London.

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UAE grants $1.9bn in loans and housing support to its citizens

Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi, Mohammed Bin Zayed Al-Nahyan, yesterday approved AED7 billion ($1.9 billion) worth of loans and ordered the distribution of housing and residential plots among the country’s citizens.

“The housing loans will benefit some 6,794 nationals,” Al-Nahyan said on twitter.

The Deputy Supreme Commander of the United Arab Emirates (UAE) Armed Forces noted that the initiative aims at providing a “decent life” for Emiratis as well as “mobilising all energies and possibilities to push forward the process of comprehensive development.”

Under the grant, some 1,789 residences, worth AED 2.1 billion ($57 billion), and 2,647 residential plots, worth AED1.3 billion ($35 billion), will be distributed among Abu Dhabi national residents.

Read: Half of UAE’s residents in debt

The government initiative comes two days after Al-Nahyan’s announcement of the launch of “Al-Riyadh City” new housing project in Abu Dhabi, which is expected to be the largest project undertaken by the Emirates in many years.

Abu Dhabi, the capital, is the largest emirate in the UAE. Some 551,000 people are currently living in the city, representing 19 per cent of the UAE’s entire population. 81 per cent of the UAE residents are foreigners, according to official data.

Earlier this month, a similar $78 million-grant was approved by the Sharjah Executive Council (SEC) to provide housing support to 502 beneficiaries in the emirate.

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New Israeli draft law would jail pro-BDS activists

A new draft bill sponsored by members of Benjamin Netanyahu’s coalition would see activists who promote the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement (BDS) campaign face criminal charges and jail time.

According to the proposal, reports Haaretz, “the crime in question, which already exists in the penal code, harms ‘Israel’s interests or Israel’s relations with a country, organization or institution’.”

The new element, backed by Likud MKs David Bitan (coalition whip), Anat Berko, and David Amsalem, as well as Kulanu lawmakers Yfat Shasha-Biton and Tali Plosko, is “including the promotion of anti-Israel boycotts as one of the acts that can result in indictment on this charge”.

The bill’s explanatory notes state that the law “is meant to apply to anyone who takes an active part in a movement that boycotts Israel or its products”.

Read: BDS’ effect on Israel

“Anyone who lends a hand to a boycott that harms Israel’s economy or harms it in other ways, like an academic boycott, must be called to account for it”, it continues.

“This is the difference between legitimate criticism and an assault that is a thuggish act in itself (boycott) and causes harm Israel and its citizens”.

The bill states that “if a boycott activist caused intentional harm, he could be liable for a prison term of up to 10 years or, in certain cases, even life”.

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Hungary evinces interest to import Nigerian <b>crude oil</b> and LNG

The Government of Hungary has expressed its intention to import crude oil and Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) from Nigeria. The intention was disclosed ...

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<b>Crude Oil</b> Prices May Struggle Even as OPEC, Allies Extend Cuts

Crude oil prices are firmly focused on the outcome of an OPEC meeting getting underway in Vienna. The cartel and a group of like-minded producers ...

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European parliament calls for recognition of Palestine

The European parliament stressed on Wednesday that “time has come for the EU members to recognise an independent state of Palestine on the 1967 borders with East Jerusalem as its capital.”

This call came in a statement for the Chair of the European Parliament’s Standing Delegation for Relations with Palestine, Neoklis Sylikiotis.

He made his call to mark International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People. He also called for the suspension of the EU partnership with Israel until it becomes “seriously committed” to respecting human rights.

Sylikiotis added: “This day reminds all of us of our failure to achieve justice for the Palestinians, who have been suffering the loss and theft of their human rights since 1948.”

He stressed that solidarity with the Palestinian people means supporting their rights within the framework of international law, including the right to self-determination and right of return.

Since 1977 the UN General Assembly has designated 29 November as the International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian people – the same day that the UN approved a resolution to partition Palestine in 1947.

Read: Fewer symbolic gestures and more action is needed for Palestine

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European parliament calls for recognition of Palestine

The European parliament stressed on Wednesday that “time has come for the EU members to recognise an independent state of Palestine on the 1967 borders with East Jerusalem as its capital.”

This call came in a statement for the Chair of the European Parliament’s Standing Delegation for Relations with Palestine, Neoklis Sylikiotis.

He made his call to mark International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People. He also called for the suspension of the EU partnership with Israel until it becomes “seriously committed” to respecting human rights.

Sylikiotis added: “This day reminds all of us of our failure to achieve justice for the Palestinians, who have been suffering the loss and theft of their human rights since 1948.”

He stressed that solidarity with the Palestinian people means supporting their rights within the framework of international law, including the right to self-determination and right of return.

Since 1977 the UN General Assembly has designated 29 November as the International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian people – the same day that the UN approved a resolution to partition Palestine in 1947.

Read: Fewer symbolic gestures and more action is needed for Palestine

The post European parliament calls for recognition of Palestine appeared first on aroundworld24.com.

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European parliament calls for recognition of Palestine

The European parliament stressed on Wednesday that “time has come for the EU members to recognise an independent state of Palestine on the 1967 borders with East Jerusalem as its capital.”

This call came in a statement for the Chair of the European Parliament’s Standing Delegation for Relations with Palestine, Neoklis Sylikiotis.

He made his call to mark International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People. He also called for the suspension of the EU partnership with Israel until it becomes “seriously committed” to respecting human rights.

Sylikiotis added: “This day reminds all of us of our failure to achieve justice for the Palestinians, who have been suffering the loss and theft of their human rights since 1948.”

He stressed that solidarity with the Palestinian people means supporting their rights within the framework of international law, including the right to self-determination and right of return.

Since 1977 the UN General Assembly has designated 29 November as the International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian people – the same day that the UN approved a resolution to partition Palestine in 1947.

Read: Fewer symbolic gestures and more action is needed for Palestine

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