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Ma'ale Adumim
Ma&#039;ale Adumim, 2006 (2)
Maale Adumim COA
Ma'ale Adumim's Emblem
Region West Bank
District Judea and Samaria Area
Government City (from 1991)
Hebrew מַעֲלֵה אֲדֻּמִּים, מעלה אדומים
Arabic معاليه أدوميم
Name meaning Red ascent
Also spelled Ma'ale Adummim (officially)
Population 33,000 (2007)
Area 49177 dunams (49.177 km2; 18.987 sq mi)
Mayor Benny Kashriel
Founded in 1976
Coordinates 31°46′30″N 35°17′53″E / 31.775°N 35.29806°E / 31.775; 35.29806Coordinates: 31°46′30″N 35°17′53″E / 31.775°N 35.29806°E / 31.775; 35.29806

Ma'ale Adumim (Hebrew: מַעֲלֵה אֲדֻמִּים‎) is an Israeli settlement and a city near Jerusalem in the West Bank and on the edge of the Judean desert. While it is located within the boundaries of the Gush Etzion Regional Council, the city is an independent municipality achieving city status in 1991.


Ma'ale Adumim was established in 1976 on territory occupied since the 1967 Six-Day War. It was built as a planned community and suburban commuter town to nearby Jerusalem, to which many residents commute daily. According to Israel Central Bureau of Statistics (CBS) figures, the city had a total population of 33,000 at the end of 2007,[1] making it the third largest Israeli city in the West Bank after Modi'in Illit, and Beitar Illit.[2] The mayor of Ma'ale Adumim is Benny Kashriel, recently elected to a third term by a large majority.

The first 23 families moved into Ma'ale Adumim on the seventh night of Hanukkah, 1975, although the town was recognized officially only in 1976. The chief urban planner was architect Rachel Walden. It achieved local council status in March 1979.[3] The city is located along Highway 1, which connects it to Jerusalem as a freeway and the Tel Aviv area. The urban plan for Ma'ale Adumim, finalized in 1983, encompasses a total of 35 square kilometers, of which 3.7 square kilometers have been built so far, in a bloc that includes Ma'ale Adumim, Mishor Adumim, Kfar Adumim, and Allon.[4]


Ma'ale Adumim is mentioned in the Book of Joshua 15:7: The boundary [of the tribe of Judah] ascended from the Valley of Achor to Debir and turned north to Gilgal, facing the Ascent of Adumim which is south of the wadi. Literally "Red Heights", it takes its name from the red rock lining the ascent from the Dead Sea.[5]


Ma'ale Adumim is a Jewish town; in 2005, the population numbered 33,259.[2][6][7] CBS figures for 2001 indicate that 99.8% of the population was Jewish. That year, there were 12,700 males and 13,000 females, with 44.1% of the population 19 years of age or younger, 14.2% between 20 and 29, 23.1% between 30 and 44, 12.6% from 45 to 59, 2.1% from 60 to 64, and 3.9% 65 years of age or older. The population growth rate in 2001 was 3.3%. The completion of a new neighborhood, temporarily known as 07, will add approximately 15,000 residents. The population is expected to reach 45,000 in the next few years.


According to the CBS, as of 2000, there were 9,965 salaried workers and 660 self-employed. The mean monthly wage in 2000 for a salaried worker in the city is NIS 6,337, a real change of 8.9% over the course of 2000. Salaried males have a mean monthly wage of NIS 8,153 (a real change of 9.0%) versus NIS 4,615 for females (a real change of 6.3%). The mean income for the self-employed is 7,098. A total of 396 people receive unemployment benefits, and 388 receive income supplements.

Schools and public institutions

According to the CBS, there are 14 schools and 5,793 students in the city, although several more have been added in the last few years. Ma'ale Adumim has 10 elementary schools with 3,524 elementary school students, and 7 high schools with 2,269 high school students. 66.9% of 12th graders were awarded a matriculation certificate in 2001. A large portion of Ma'ale Adumim's budget is spent on education. Schools offer after-school programs, class trips, and tutoring where needed. A special program has been developed for new immigrant children. Additional resources are invested in special education and classes for gifted children, including a special after-school program for honors students in science and math.

Birkat hachama Maale Adumim

Religious ceremony Birkat Hachama in 2009 in Ma'ale Adumim

There are over 40 synagogues and several yeshivas, among them Yeshivat Birkat Moshe. Mitzpe Nevo is a national-religious neighborhood in Ma'ale Adumim.

Land ownership

Peace Now, an organization advocating for the return to pre-1967 borders, reported that 86.4% of Ma'ale Adumim was privately owned Palestinian land, basing the figure on data leaked from a government report.[8][9] After Peace Now successfully petitioned the Israeli courts to have the government release the official data, the group revised the figure to 0.5% of the property having been privately owned Palestinian land.[9] Palestinians claim lands from the villages of Abu Dis, Al Izriyyeh, Al Issawiyyeh, Al Tur and Anata were confiscated to create the settlement[10].


Ma'ale Adumim is strategically located between the northern and southern parts of the West Bank. The Palestinians see this as a threat to the territorial continuity of a future Palestinian state. This claim is disputed by mayor Benny Kashriel, who claims that continuity would be attained by circling Ma'ale Adumim to the east.[11]

Currently, Israeli drivers use a bypass road that exits the city to the west, entering Jerusalem through the French Hill Junction or a tunnel that goes under Mt. Scopus. These routes were built in the wake of the First and Second Intifadas when Palestinian snipers shot at motorists and cars were stoned. The previous road passes through Azariya and Abu Dis.

File:Ma'ale adumim expansion photo.jpg

In March 2005, a report by John Dugard for the United Nations Commission on Human Rights stated that the "three major settlement blocs - Gush Etzion, Ma'ale Adumim and Ariel - will effectively divide Palestinian territory into cantons or Bantustans."[12] Israel denies these charges, and claims the solution is a by-pass road similar to those used daily by Israelis to avoid driving through hostile Arab areas. Ma'ale Adumim is expected to remain under Israeli control in future agreements with the Palestinian Authority.[who?]

The 07 development project in east Ma'ale Adumim was supported by Ariel Sharon in 2005.[13] Israeli Foreign Ministry spokesman Mark Regev denied the 07 extension plan is a violation of the roadmap peace plan, under which Israel agreed to freeze all building in the settlements.

A project to link Ma'ale Adumim and Jerusalem, known as the E1 project - short for "East 1," as it appears on old zoning maps - has been criticized by the Palestinian Authority and other parties, including US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice and US President George W. Bush.[14] The E1 neighborhood, tentatively called Mevaseret Adumim, is slated for completion by 2020, with 3,500-5,000 residential units. The new headquarters for the Judea and Samaria District police, formerly located in the Ras el-Amud neighborhood of Jerusalem, is now under construction there.[15]. On 7th of September 2009 there was a ceremony for setting a founding stone in E1.

Legal Status

Ma'ale Adumim is regarded by international community as illegal under international law according to Fourth Geneva Convention (article 49), which prohibits an occupying power transferring citizens from its own territory to occupied territory. Israel argues that international conventions relating to occupied land do not apply to the West Bank because it was not under the legitimate sovereignty of any state in the first place.[16]


The Byzantine monastery of Martyrius, once the most important monastic centre in the Judean Desert in the early Christian era, is located in Ma'ale Adumim.[17] Other archeological sites on the outskirts of Ma'ale Adumim include the Khan el-Ahmar,[18] also known as the Inn of the Good Samaritan (cited in a parable by Jesus, in Luke 10:30-37),[19] and the remains of the Monastery of St. Euthymius. Khan al-Ahmar is a 13th century travelers inn for pilgrims on the route between Jerusalem and Mecca via Nabi Musa[20] as well as the name of a 300 person Bedouin village located next to the settlement. The Monastery of St. Euthymius, built in the 5th century, was destroyed by the Mamluk sultan Baybars.[21]


  1. "Table 3 - Population of Localities Numbering Above 1,000 Residents and Other Rural Population" (PDF). Israel Central Bureau of Statistics. 2008-06-30. Retrieved 2008-10-18. 
  2. 2.0 2.1 Lazaroff, Tovah (2007-01-10). "Report: 12,400 New Settlers in 2006". The Jerusalem Post. Retrieved 2008-10-25. 
  3. "Municipality of Ma'ale Adumim". Retrieved 2008-10-25. 
  4. a b "The Expansion of Ma'ale Adumim". Applied Research Institute of Jerusalem (ARIJ). Retrieved 2006-02-10. 
  5. "Ma'aleh Adumim - History". Retrieved 2008-10-25. 
  6. Phil Reeves (16 July 2000). "'Immovable' town bars the way to new state of Palestine". The Independant. Retrieved 2009-10-09. 
  7. Megan Steintrager (2000-11-15). "middle east muddle". Retrieved 2009-10-09. 
  8. "According to the report, 86.4% of the Maale Adumim settlement block, the largest in the West Bank, is built on private Palestinian land"
  9. 9.0 9.1 Shragai, Nadav (2007-03-14). "Peace Now: 32% of land held for settlements is private Palestinian property". Haaretz. Retrieved 2009-07-06. 
  10. "Maaleh Adumim was established on lands taken from Palestinians, from the villages of Abu Dis, Al Izriyyeh, Al Issawiyyeh, Al Tur and Anata. Other lands had been inhabited for dozen of years by the Jahalin and Sawahareh Bedouin tribes."
  11. "Israel's 'Linchpin' Settlement". BBC. 2005-11-12. Retrieved 2008-10-25. 
  12. Dugard, John (2005-03-03). "Question of the Violation of Human Rights in the Occupied Arab Territories, Including Palestine" (PDF). Report to the Commission on Human Rights. United Nations. Retrieved 2006-06-27. 
  13. "Sharon Pledges Settlement Growth". BBC. 2005-04-05. Retrieved 2008-10-25. 
  14. Benhorin, Yitzhak (2005-03-25). "Rice Slams Israel's Settlements Plans". Ynetnews.,7340,L-3063401,00.html. Retrieved 2008-10-25. 
  15. Kershner, Isabel (2006-04-17). "Unilateral Thinking - April 2006". Retrieved 2008-10-25. 
  17. "The Monastery of Martyrius at Ma'ale Adummim", Yitzhak Magen, Israel Antiquities Authority, Jerusalem 1993
  18. Rossner, Rena (2004-06-14). "Jerusalem Report Article". Retrieved 2008-10-25. 
  19. "Tours from Jerusalem". Retrieved 2008-10-25. 
  20. Murphy-O'Connor, Jerome (2008). The Holy Land: An Oxford Archaeological Guide from Earliest Times to 1700. Oxford University Press US. pp. 335. ISBN 0199236666. 
  21. "Historical Sites". Jericho Municipality. Retrieved 2008-10-25. 

External links

ar:معاليه أدوميم

cs:Ma'ale Adumim da:Ma'ale Adumimfa:معاله آدومیمka:მაალე-ადუმიმიja:マアレ・アドゥンミーム no:Ma'ale Adumimpt:Ma'ale Adummim ru:Маале-Адумим fi:Ma'ale Adumim sv:Ma'ale Adummim tl:Ma'ale Adumim

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