A Palestinian Authority Arab group calling itself “the European initiative to remove the fence and the settlements” has launched a new media campaign in Europe, entitled “Palestine without a fence and with no settlements.”
Arab affairs expert Dalit Halevi reports that the group’s chairman, Amin Abu Rashid, an Arab-Dutch national known for his activism in favor of Hamas and Gaza-bound flotillas, is calling as part of the campaign to continue what he termed the “Palestinian Spring” protests against the Jewish communities in Judea and Samaria.
Halevi reports that Abu Rashid is calling on PA Arabs to continue to establish facts on the ground by setting up illegal outposts in areas designated for expropriation by Israel.
At least two such outposts have already been set up by PA Arabs. The first one, in the E1 area which connects Jerusalem and Maaleh Adumim, was demolished by Israel last week and its inhabitants evacuated.
Last Friday, another illegal outpost was set up by Arabs, this time in Beit Iksa, a PA Arab village located between the Ramot and Mevasseret Zion neighborhoods of Jerusalem.
The Arabs have indicated they intend to erect more tents in the new illegal outpost and even build a mosque.
Halevi quoted Abu Rashid as having said in a press conference on Sunday that the attempts to establish illegal outposts were an expression of the so-called “Palestinian Spring,” which he said must be escalated in light of what he called “the crazy attack of settlements, especially in Jerusalem.”
He said he supported the initiative to establish new Arab villages, in order to convey a message to the world that the owners of the land are attached to their land and to their right to build it, and they will not accept Israel’s attempt to establish facts on the ground and change reality.
The Arabs who set up the newest outpost near Beit Iksa said that the reason for the outpost is the fact that Beit Iksa is set to be entirely encircled by Israel’s border fence, cutting it off from Jerusalem.
Israeli authorities ordered the confiscation of 124 acres of the village’s land three weeks ago, and do not permit any new building in the town, they claimed.