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>> When it comes to Israeli settlements in the occupied west bank, the big pictures has been descend for the past years. More settlers, more construction, but a closer look at the data reveal a few of surprises. Reporting from modelling late settlements I'm Reuters reporter Lee Marcel. In the past decade the Israeli settle population in west bank land the Palestinian one for a future state as more than double to almost four hundred thousand settlers.
But data from Israel statistics bureau show that the rate of migration into the settlement is today a third of what it was a decade ago. In other words the increasing population is due to natural growth. Not to people choosing to move into the settlements, as once was the case.
Natural growth appears to be driven by a handful of settlements like this one. A town built for the ultra-orthodox Jewish community, which is largely made of of low-income and large families. Not for ideological reasons. Most significantly settlement like are closer to Israel proper they are part of a few cluster Israel is likely to keep in the future peace deal with the Palestinians.
Meanwhile some of the oldest and most hard line ideological settlements which are far deeper inside the West bank. Are seeing more people leave than come in every year. Some commentators in Israel believe these factors actually point to a fall in the popularity of the settlement enterprise. Settler leaders say there is no fall in popularity.
The problem, they say, is that the Israeli government is not allowing enough constructions of new homes, and that is the reason why people move out.