Defense Minister Naftali Bennett on Monday authorized construction of a new bypass road in the Maale Adumim area. The road will connect Arab villages near Maale Adumim with Arab neighborhoods in Yerushalayim, including Anata, Hizma and A-Ram.
The road will serve two purposes – reducing traffic on the Yerushalayim-Maale Adumim road, and rerouting traffic from the Arab villages away from the main road. The road, officials said, would allow for Israeli construction in the E1 region.
The E1 corridor is a parcel of land that lies between Yerushalayim and Maale Adumim. Israel has sought for years to build in the area, but has been stymied by American administrations, at the behest of the Palestinian Authority, which claims that mass Israeli construction in the area would essentially make a Palestinian state impossible, as it would irrevocably divide the two major Palestinian population centers – the Ramallah/Shechem area and the Chevron area – from each other.
“We have to give a green light to the ‘sovereignty road’ that will allow for the connection of Yerushalayim and Maale Adumim,” Bennett said. “The project will improve the quality of life for all of the area’s residents, and will enable us to build in the area. Sovereignty is achieved through actions, not words, and we will continue with those actions.”