Shilo Adler, who heads the Yesha Council – the unofficial federation of Judea and Samaria local government heads – issued a tongue-in-cheek statement of gratitude to ultra-leftist NGO Peace Now on Sunday, for a report that he said places building freeze on public agenda.
"We wish to thank Peace Now once again for the report they issued," Shilo announced. "We are happy that they are placing the matter of the building stoppage in Judea and Samaria on the public agenda. It is unacceptable that we are at the jubilee year of the settlement enterprise – we've been here 50 years – yet construction is so limited and tiny, and building sites are so few and far between.
"It's unacceptable that there is no construction in Maale Adumim, in Ariel, Tapuah and Eli," he went on. "We view this report gravely. There is blatant discrimination against the Israeli populace that lives in Judea and Samaria. We call on the Israeli government to enable construction so that these areas of Judea and Samaria may flourish, and we thank Peace Now for their selfless devotion to the settlement enterprise. We will remember this for a long time to come."
According to the Peace Now report, the government initiated 40 percent less construction in Judea and Samaria in the year 2015 than in the previous year. The report listed 1,800 building initiatives having taken place during 2015, as opposed to over 3,100 in 2014.
The report also mentioned that more than 70% of the initiatives took place in distant towns and only 30 percent took place in more settled areas. All in all, 348 building permits were given. During 2015 a total of 63 public buildings such as kindergartens, synagogues and others were constructed, along with 42 industrial or agricultural buildings and 1,547 domiciles. Another 253 movable buildings were put in place over the course of the year as well.