Israel has approved its largest land seizure in the West Bank in more than three decades, appropriating 12.7 square kilometres in the Jordan Valley. This decision marks the largest single appropriation since the 1993 Oslo Accords and has significant implications for the region’s future.

The land seizure links Israeli settlements along a critical corridor adjacent to Jordan, further complicating the prospects for a future Palestinian state. Israel has occupied the West Bank since 1967, with successive governments declaring large swaths as “state lands” to prevent private Palestinian ownership. This latest appropriation follows earlier seizures of 8 square kilometres in March and 2.6 square kilometres in February of this year.

Critics, including the Israeli peace organisation Peace Now, have denounced the Israeli leadership for prioritising settlers over broader national and international interests.

A United Nations spokesperson condemned the move as a step in the wrong direction. Land confiscations in 2024 have surged to ten times the amount in previous years under the influence of Bezalel Smotrich, an extremist Israeli politician and strong proponent of settlement expansion. Smotrich’s agenda is aimed at thwarting the establishment of a Palestinian state, facilitated by transferring military legal powers to pro-settler civil servants.

Since Israel launched its military assault on Gaza on 7 October, there has been a significant increase in jewish settler violence, forcing many Palestinians to flee to nearby towns. The Israeli army has increased demolitions of Palestinian homes, worsening the displacement crisis. Recent incidents include the destruction of 11 homes in the West Bank village of Umm al-Kheir, where Israeli soldiers used live ammunition and teargas against Palestinian villagers.

With land grab and jewish settler violence, Israel is also continuing its attacks on Gaza where it has killed 38,011 Palestinians, mostly women and children, and wounded 87,445 others.