Work is beginning in Jerusalem on a large-scale housing scheme involving four large housing projects to be built by the Israelis in the hills surrounding the city.
Work is beginning in Jerusalem on a large-scale housing scheme involving four large housing projects to be built by the Israelis in the hills surrounding the city. At a press conference on Monday 15 February in the formerly-divided city, Israeli Housing Minister Zev Sharef discussed the plan and stated the goal of the project was to stimulate immigration in an effort to keep Jerusalem a "Jewish city".
Visnews cameraman Rolf Kneller was on hand for the press conference and he also went to the housing project sites to film the state of the work.
SYNOPSIS: A sign in Jerusalem's hills marks the site of a massive new housing scheme. The Israeli Housing Ministry in Jerusalem was the scene of a press conference Monday announcing the go-ahead.
Housing Minister Zev Sharef discussed the project. Some of the work will be carried out near Nebi Samuel, in the city's hills. There are up to 35,000 units planned in all which will be capable of housing 122,000 new Israeli residents.
Mr. Sharef said the purpose was to stimulate immigration into the formerly-divided city in order to keep Jerusalem a "Jewish city".
Part of the work involves the construction of a road to the site at Nebi Samuel. The site there will be called Ramot.
Trucks unload earth and gravel for the roadbed filling for the new road. In all, there are four sites planned for the city's hills.
Some of those working on the project, as shown by this tractor driver, are Arabs. Mr. Sharef said the Israeli Government would finance new housing schemes for Arabs north and south of Jerusalem.
Plans for the housing scheme had been halted temporarily in late January when Jerusalem's Mayor Teddy Kollek said the projects would be delayed for urbanistic and aesthetic reasons. The Mayor was responding to criticism from planners on environmental grounds. But Monday's announcement meant work was to begin in earnest.