The defense establishment confirmed that in recent weeks West Bank settlers have been making a noticeable effort to expedite construction, in an attempt to maximize the "facts on the ground" before the United States and Israel reach an agreement on a settlement freeze.
A senior security source said this week that the defense establishment's view on the situation was reflected in reports published in Haaretz last Friday, which stated that extensive construction is currently being carried out in at least 11 settlements.
"The settlers are very much in tune with the ticking political clock," the senior defense source said. "You can sense it on the ground, with the infrastructure work that is being done, but also in more minor things. They are acting without any legal authorization and are ignoring the state.
"The approach at this time is that whoever can, goes ahead and builds
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