The Israeli army stormed the Palestinian village of Shuafat, without warning and seized the land.
The project had been agreed by the Israeli planning authority in January 2013. The road will create a network of bypass roads that aims to link all Israeli settlements in the North of Jerusalem al Quds.
A political analyst from Birzeit University stated that following US Secretary of State John Kerry’s visit to the region, Israel’s rhetoric about its willingness to enter into peace negotiations with Palestine is different to their actions against the Palestinian population.
The new highway named route 21, will imprison many Palestinians inside their villages, as they will not be able to use the new road and will instead have to take alternative, longer and more dangerous ways to Jerusalem al-Quds. The Israelis will further erect road blocks and guard towers to stop residents from entering the highway.
The most affected areas from this road will be the Palestinian towns of Beit Hanina and Shuafat. Route 21 will connect the settlement of Ramat Schlomo from the east and travel northwards where it will finally connect with Atarot industrial zone. In addition to route 21, Israel aims to create a network of contiguous Israeli bypass roads within the city of Jerusalem in order to facilitate the entry and exit of Israeli settlers to and from their settlements.
Palestinian residents in the area are concerned, that due to the new road linking to settlements such as Ramat Schlomo, which is still being expanded, this will lead to the Israeli authorities demolishing more Palestinian homes to make way for settlements.