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Monday, April 26, 2010

New Jewish town in Judea for the first time since 1996?

The Israeli government told the Supreme Court on Sunday that it is considering legalizing an 'illegal outpost' in the Etzion bloc area whose construction was started before March 2001 if a new survey finds that the 'outpost' was built on state land and not on land privately owned by 'Palestinians.' The Sharon government promised the Bush administration that it would dismantle 26 'illegal outposts' whose construction began after March 2001. If in fact the 'outpost' is legalized, it may be the first new Jewish town allowed in Judea or Samaria since 1996.
In a response filed ahead of a High Court of Justice hearing scheduled for Monday, the state wrote that even though the entire Derech Ha’avot outpost, with its 17 permanent homes and 15 mobile homes, was built without a permit, the state is considering retroactively legalizing all of those structures that were not built on privately owned Palestinian land.

“The state has decided to order a survey of the lands in Derech Ha’avot,” the state’s representative, attorney Gilad Shirman, informed the court. “To the extent that the survey reveals that some or all of the houses are built on state land, the state will consider the possibility of legalizing the construction. Regarding buildings that are found to have been built on private land, the demolition orders will be applied in accordance with the [state’s] order of priorities.”

The state was responding to a petition filed by eight Palestinian farmers from the West Bank village of El Khader and Peace Now, charging that the land upon which the buildings of Derech Ha’avot stand belongs to the Palestinian petitioners.

They maintain that they owned the land and cultivated it until the outbreak of the second intifada, when they had to abandon it because of curfews and closures that forced them to remain at home.

In its initial response to the petition, the state acknowledged that all the construction was illegal and that the Civil Administration of Judea and Samaria had issued demolition orders against all the structures. It did not confirm the petitioners’ allegation that the buildings were erected on private Palestinian land but said that since the land was not registered, it was unclear whether it was state- or privately-owned.

According to the government, Derech Ha’avot was established in February 2001, one month before the cut-off date established by the Israel and the US in the road map agreement. Then-prime minister Ariel Sharon promised to dismantle all outposts built after March 2001. Israel maintains that 26 were built after that date and, although the overwhelming majority of them still stand, they are slated, on paper at least, for demolition.

Derech Ha’avot is not one of them, according to Israel. However, the US has a different list of outposts built after March 2001, and it is possible that Derech Ha’avot is on the American list. Furthermore, Peace Now spokeswoman Hagit Ofran told The Jerusalem Post that her organization has aerial photos of the area showing that construction of Derech Ha’avot began only in May 2001.
Imagine that. The Jewish government may actually decide not to demolish the homes of 32 Jewish families built in the State of Israel (right next to - but apparently outside the boundaries of - another Jewish town called Elazar).

The traitors at Peace Now will have a fit. The Obama administration will spend all its time focusing on the ramshackle mobile homes rather than focusing on Iran. The world community will shake in anger.

What could go wrong?


At 8:42 PM, Blogger NormanF said...

What it says is the world is more concerned about where Jews live than it is about the danger from Iran.

Who knew a handful of Jews upset it so much?


At 11:24 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

the solution is simple

if the west bank must be judenfrei...good

complete the population transfer

all arabs living within israel proper must move to the west bank

oh...we cant do that...the only ethnic cleansing that is allowed is when arabs do it to the jews


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