On Wednesday, the new Israeli administration, headed by Benjamin Netanyahu, who is making a return, published its policy principles, making settlement growth in the occupied West Bank its primary goal.
On Wednesday, Netanyahu’s Likud party unveiled the policies that the incoming administration will follow. The first of these vows is to “advance and develop a settlement in all parts of the land of Israel – in the Galilee, Negev, Golan Heights, and Judea and Samaria” (Biblical designations for the Palestinian West Bank).
Netanyahu, Israel’s longest-serving leader, will preside over a coalition of hardline religious and conservative right parties when he takes government again. The incoming administration will be the most right-wing in Israel’s history when it takes office on Thursday.
The decision might put the next administration in conflict with some of Israel’s closest friends, notably the United States, which is against the building of settlements on occupied land.
In addition to the Gaza Strip and east Jerusalem, Israel also took control of the West Bank in 1967.
The West Bank is what the Palestinian Authority (PA) envisions as the core of a future independent state. But despite the fact that these Jewish colonies are against international law, Israel has built dozens of them and today calls nearly 500,000 of them home.
The Israeli military, which runs separate highways intended to be used only by Jewish settlers, significantly restricts the movement of the approximately 2.5 million Palestinians who live in the occupied West Bank.
A far-right extreme nationalist religious faction, Netanyahu’s Likud party, and ultra-Orthodox parties make up his new cabinet, which is the most pious and conservative in Israel’s history. On Thursday, it is anticipated to be sworn in.
The Jewish Power party’s ultranationalist leader Itamar Ben-Gvir was given extended control over the police by a measure voted by the Knesset earlier on Wednesday. He was given the new position of Minister of National Security, which was created just for him.
The new government’s attitudes on LGBT rights, discrimination, and Israel’s Arab minority were the subject of “great worry” from Israel’s President Isaac Herzog, according to a statement released by his office on Wednesday.