Israeli authorities have approved plans for construction of 1,292 settler homes in the occupied West Bank, a settlement watchdog NGO reports.
Peace Now reported that the Israeli authorities approved the plans on Tuesday, noting that further approvals were likely on Wednesday
The Israeli committee which oversees the settlement construction in the West Bank is expected to approve the construction of over 2,000 units in the course of its two-day meeting.
According to Israeli officials, a total of around 12,000 residential units will be granted different stages of approval in 2017, four times the amount last year.
Settlement building in the occupied West Bank and annexed east Jerusalem al-Quds is considered illegal under international law.
Since the inauguration of US President Donald Trump in January 2017, the regime in Tel Aviv has stepped up construction of settler units on the occupied Palestinian land in a blatant violation of international law.
Less than a month before Trump took office, the United Nations Security Council adopted Resolution 2334, which called on Israel to “immediately and completely cease all settlement activities in the occupied Palestinian territories, including East Jerusalem” al-Quds.
In May, the Israeli Foreign Ministry appealed to the US to nullify Resolution 2334.
About 600,000 Israelis live in over 230 illegal settlements built since the 1967 Israeli occupation of the Palestinian territories of the West Bank and East Jerusalem al-Quds.
Palestinians want the West Bank as part of a future independent Palestinian state, with East Jerusalem al-Quds as its capital.
The continued expansion of Israeli settlements is one of the major obstacles to the establishment of peace in the Middle East.
The last round of Israeli-Palestinian talks collapsed in 2014. Among the major sticking points in those negotiations was Israel’s continued settlement expansion on Palestinian territories.