Israel turns swathes of occupied West Bank into ‘nature reserves’

Israel's defence minister Wednesday announced the creation of seven nature reserves in the occupied West Bank as part of efforts…

Israel’s defence minister Wednesday announced the creation of seven nature reserves in the occupied West Bank as part of efforts to maintain Israeli control, weeks before a general election.

The sites are all located in what is know as Area C of the West Bank that includes the strategic Jordan Valley, which Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said in September he planned to annex.

Defence Minister Naftali Bennett, whose rightwing New Right party draws much of its support from Jewish settlers, said last week that the territory belonged to Israel and his goal was to annex it “within a short time”.

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