An Israeli settlement in the Shilo Valley of occupied West Bank has been under construction since its announcement last week. The new settlement is meant to relocate around 50 Israeli families from a settlement recently dismantled by the Israeli Supreme Court in February.
The Shilo Valley settlement is the first to be authorized by Israel in about two decades, and comes less than a week after the UN openly criticized Israel for refusing to stop construction on occupied Palestinian territory. The UN Security Council had deemed such settlements illegal and demanded under Resolution 2334 that existing settlements and settlement construction be halted. Though this resolution was passed in December of 2016, Israel has not complied with the order in the ensuing months, resulting in renewed tensions and controversy in the region.
It is believed that settlements such as the one in Shilo Valley could pose a threat to the livelihood of Palestinian residents in the area, specifically for those who rely on farming for their income. With more Israeli residents flowing into the area, Palestinians may be forced to relocate their farms as the land becomes more densely populated. Some report a reduction in job and education opportunities as a whole, increasing the tensions already present between the two groups.
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