Israeli West Bank Settler Population Hits 500k

As of January 1st 2023, the Israeli Settler  population has hit 502,991. The half a million mark comes as Israel forms a very nationalistic government, who has announced intent to make settlement building a top priority.

The report was released last week by, a pro-Settler group. The 500k, along with the additional 200k of East Jerusalem, is still far below the regions 3 million Palestinians. However, Baruch Gordon, the director of the group which released the report, says he believes settlement building will increase rapidly in the coming years, mostly thanks to the Netanyahu administration.

Israel gained hold of the West Bank (referred to by them as Judea and Samaria), East Jerusalem, and Gaza in 1967. Since then they have constructed settlements, which Palestinian groups and many Human Rights Organizations consider to be illegal/illegitimate. Palestinian groups accuse Israel of using the settlements to make Palestinian statehood all the more difficult.

Previously, there were also settlements in Gaza. However, they were evacuated after Hamas took over the Gaza Strip.