Settlers agree to evacuate West Bank outpost Bnei Adam
Barak orders IDF to increase supervision of West Bank settlement building by 50%, including in Area C.
Residents of the Bnei Adam outpost have agreed to voluntarily evacuate three caravans in their West Bank settlement, after being advised to do so by leading rabbis of the national religious movement.
The High Court of Justice ruled on Thursday that the outpost would be evacuated within five days, after hearing a petition from Bnei Adam residents who oppose the move.
Earlier in the week, Binyamin Regional Council head Avi Roeh visited the outpost and negotiated with the IDF over the voluntary evacuation.
Right-wing MK Michael Ben Ari slammed the decision as nevertheless constraining. "Even farmed fish get more notice" than outpost evacuees, he said.
Meanwhile, Defense Minister Ehud Barak has ordered the Israel Defense Forces' Civil Administration to drastically increase the number of inspectors overseeing construction in the West Bank, apparently in deference to American demands for a settlement freeze.
The defense minister has asked for a 50 percent rise in the number of inspectors, to oversee all new construction in the territory.
The inspectors will be charged with monitoring all illegal building activity in area C, demarcated Palestinian land, although the mandate of the Civil Administration is general restricted to territory under Israeli control.
Also on Thursday, the chairman of the Kfar Ekev Regional Council - with the support of the Yesh Din human rights group - petitioned the High Court to halt construction of 12 homes now being erected at the nearby Kochav Ya'akov settlement.
According to the council chairman, Eli Barkat, the construction is taking over private Palestinian land outside the legal demarcation of the settlement.