|As of today, the tender for 1,077 housing units in Givat Hamatos has not been open. The tender was scheduled to open for bidding yesterday, November 2. This constitutes the third time since its publication in February 2020 in which the tender has not opened according to schedule.
In a similar manner to the previous two postponements, the Israel Land Authority has yet to publish an announcement clarifying the status of the tender and whether or not a new date for its opening has been set. Following its first postponement from the month of May, the tender was due to open in the beginning of August, which likewise did not occur. Announcement of its subsequent postponement to November 2 only took place at the end of August.
Ir Amim will continue to follow the developments and update accordingly.
If advanced, Givat Hamatos would become the first new settlement in East Jerusalem in 20 years. Located in a particularly strategic area, Givat Hamatos (along with Har Homa E and E1) has constituted a longstanding international red line due its impact on the prospects of a viable two-state framework with two capitals in Jerusalem. By creating a contiguous Israeli built-up area between the existing settlements of Gilo and Har Homa, construction in Givat Hamatos will serve to seal off the southern perimeter of East Jerusalem from Bethlehem and the southern part of the West Bank, while isolating the Palestinian neighborhood of Beit Safafa.
Establishment of large settlements has been a long-term strategy of the Israeli government to fracture the Palestinian space and unilaterally determine the boundaries of Jerusalem to prevent a future Palestinian capital in the city.