Newspapers Review: Israeli settlements expansion main focus of dailies

RAMALLAH,� Israeli plans to expand settlement construction across the West Bank, especially in the Jerusalem and Jordan Valley districts, as US President-elect Donald Trump prepares to take office hit the front page headlines in Palestinian dailies on Monday.

Al-Quds and al-Ayyam said Israel approved the construction of 1,440 new housing units in Ramat Shlomo settlement near the Jerusalem neighborhood of Shufat.

Al-Ayyam said the construction of these units is part of a larger Israeli plan to construct tens of thousands of new settlement units across the West Bank.

Highlighting Israel's plans to retroactively legalize settlement outposts across the West Bank, al-Quds said Israel plans to legalize the confiscation of Palestinian land through the adoption of the arbitration model of Cyprus.

While al-Quds and al-Ayyam covered Israel's settlement expansion plans, al-Hayat al-Jadida spotlighted Palestinian demonstrations against the Israeli bill that would ban the Muslim call to prayer (adhan) from playing over loudspeakers.

It said Palestinians from three faiths, namely Muslims, Christians and Samaritans, recited the adhan during a demonstration in the northern West Bank city of Nablus.

Al-Quds said in this regard the Jewish political party of Yahadut Hatorah withdrew its opposition to the bill, which would unlikely be put to a vote in the Israeli parliament, the Knesset, on Wednesday.

Al-Ayyam said in this regard the Israeli authorities intend to introduce modifications to the bill.

Al-Hayat al-Jadida said Israeli municipality of Lydda (Lod) fined a local muezzin for sounding the adhan over loudspeakers. It added an extremist Jewish group turned a Palestinian-owned building into a synagogue.

Highlighting French officials' denial that France has halted efforts to convene the international peace conference, the three dailies reported French Consul in Jerusalem Pierre Cochard as affirming France would pursue efforts to convene the conference.

The dailies said Jewish settlers seized a Palestinian home in Bab Hutta area in Jerusalem's Old City.

They reported Israeli forces delivered demolition and eviction notices for 20 Palestinian residential structures in Umm al-Kheir locality, east of Yatta, in the southern West Bank.

Al-Quds said a Palestinian girl was detained by Israeli police in Jerusalem's Old City purportedly for having a knife in her possession.

Furthermore, the dailies said the Israeli municipality of West Jerusalem has advanced a plan to give Israeli names to streets in occupied East Jerusalem.

Al-Ayyam said Israeli premier, Benjamin Netanyahu, has defended Israel's deal to purchase three submarines from Germany against conflict of interest accusations.

Al-Hayat al-Jadida said Health Ministry has formed a committee to be in charge of drafting a medical errors insurance regulation, while al-Ayyam said Palestinian police arrested six Palestinians for assaulting a doctor inside Ramallah's Medical Complex.

It is worth noting the formation of this committee came on the heels of Palestinian rallies urging the Palestinian Authority to exert serious efforts to fight medical negligence and errors. A number of Palestinians have died and others suffered serious health problems as a result of suspected medical negligence and errors.

Source: Palestine News & Info Agency (WAFA)

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