Al Jazeera Net correspondents
Occupied Jerusalem- For years, the Israeli occupation municipality in Jerusalem has been promoting a project it called “Silicon Valley” as a high-tech project through which thousands of jobs could be created for Palestinians. JerusalemHowever, land and settlement expert Khalil Al-Tafakji reveals the real goals behind the project.
Recently, the project – which is scheduled to be built on about 30 dunums (a dunum equals a thousand square metres) of Jerusalemite land in the industrial zone in the Wadi Al-Joz neighborhood – passed new approvals in the Jerusalem Municipality, in preparation for the start of its implementation.
Al-Tufakji says that the project comes within a completely clear Israeli policy based on “the process of merging East Jerusalem (occupied in 1967) and West Jerusalem (occupied in 1948).”
He explained that this means to the Israeli side that “Jerusalem is not divisible,” and thus he is anticipating events by establishing settlement outposts inside the Palestinian neighborhoods “within a completely clear program that aims primarily to encircle, divide, and separate the Palestinian neighborhoods and Silicon Valley within this program.”
The settlement expert said that the Israeli program was set to be implemented between 2024 and 2028, with about one billion dollars allocated “for a clear strategic goal that includes integrating infrastructure after which it will be difficult to separate West and East Jerusalem, which the Palestinians claim as their capital.”
He pointed to the construction of “sovereign” institutions in the Wadi al-Joz neighborhood, including branches of the Ministries of Interior and Social Affairs and the National Command of the Israeli Police.
Al-Tufakji concluded, “The Israeli side is working to prevent the establishment of a Palestinian state with East Jerusalem as its capital, as if it is telling the world that Jerusalem cannot be divided, and will remain the capital of the Hebrew state and that there is no Palestinian partner.”