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US pressure kills 'Greater Jerusalem bill'

Pressure by the Trump administration caused Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to suspend his Greater Jerusalem bill.
Old City is seen during sunset in Jerusalem, October 30, 2017.REUTERS/Ammar Awad - RC172B48C7D0
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On Oct. 29, the Knesset’s ministerial committee on legislation was scheduled to approve the proposed bill known as the Greater Jerusalem law, which would annex the West Bank settlements of Maale Adumim, Givat Zeev, Beitar Illit and the Etzion bloc settlements (including Efrat) to Jerusalem. Some 150,000 Israelis live in these towns and local councils.

The idea of annexing Israeli settlements adjacent to Jerusalem’s municipal borders in order to increase the city’s population and ensure its Jewish majority has been around for a decade. Back in 2007, Likud Party Knesset member Yisrael Katz put forth a similar proposal, which never took off due to concerns about harsh international and Palestinian reaction.

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