Ramallah: After a year long negotiation period, the sale of the Transdev share of CityPass, a consortium that owns the Jerusalem Light Rail (JLR) has gone ahead with the approval of the Israeli government.

The JLR has been a controversial project since its inception, particularly because its construction involved the takeover of Palestinian land occupied by Israel. The takeover contradicted international law and the fourth Geneva Convention because the expropriation was not done to benefit the people whose lands were occupied.

According to the Who Profits website, the JLR, which connects Jewish colonies and travels through the Palestinian neighborhoods of Beit Hanina and Shuafat, “will play a substantial role in the reinforcement of Israeli sovereignty over occupied East Jerusalem for years to come.”

The sale of its JLR share represents the withdrawl of Transdev’s parent company, Veolia Environnement, from Israel. Who Profits alleges that the company has engaged in “several illegal operations in the occupied Palestinian territory.”

Beyond the Green Line, Who Profit claims, Veolia’s Israeli subsidiaries freely operated, providing services such as bus services to colonies, running a landfill in the Jordan Valley and operating a wastewater treatment facility for colony sewerage.

Veolia has been divesting itself of these subsidiaries since 2013. Who Profits is “a research centre dedicated to exposing the commercial involvement of Israeli and international companies in the continued Israeli control over Palestinian and Syrian land.”