One day in early January, the Palestinian Authority (PA) announced that it had bought a building in the city that was originally part of the old city of Bethlehem.
The building, located in al-Quds Square, was formerly known as the National University of Palestine (UNP).
The move, which was first reported by the Jerusalem Post, was the latest in a series of moves by Palestinian leaders to buy up historic property and modernize it.
Since last summer, PA President Mahmoud Abbas has purchased a number of properties that are situated in Jerusalem and the occupied West Bank, according to local media reports.
Abbas is not the first to try to move some of the city’s historic buildings to the capital.
In 2014, the PA announced that its buildings in the Old City of Jerusalem would be taken over by the PA.
Since then, the move has also attracted international attention, with the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights (UNHRC) calling on both the PA and Israel to respect international law.
But the Palestinian leadership has rejected calls for the purchase of historic buildings, arguing that such moves are in the interests of the PA as a “sustainable and viable enterprise.”
According to the Palestinian official Wafa, the new building will be used for the Palestinian Ministry of Finance, which is part of PA President Abbas’ administration.
The PA also plans to build a museum to honor the late Palestinian president Yasser Arafat, Wafa added.
The new building is the first of what the Palestinians hope will be a series for Palestinian history, she added.
The UN’s High Commissioner on Human Rights also recently expressed concerns over the continued Israeli occupation of the West, calling on the Israeli government to immediately end all construction in the occupied territories.
In a statement, he said that the Palestinian territory has no legal status beyond the borders of the 1967 Green Line and that the construction of any new structures is in violation of the Fourth Geneva Convention.
The Palestinian Authority and other Palestinians are also fighting against the construction in various parts of the occupied Palestinian territories.