Evacuation Orders Issued for Homes in 10 West Bank Outposts

The Civil Administration yesterday released the full list of West Bank outposts where occupants of some buildings will be told they will be considered illegal residents if they do not leave the site within three days of the order. However, no timetable has been set for evacuation and it is uncertain that residents will be removed from the structures in question, in 10 outposts, in the near future.

Defense Minister Ehud Barak told Army Radio yesterday it would be "foolish" to state the planned time of evacuation, since that would make it easier for settlers to prepare opposition to the move.

The list of outposts includes Havat Shaked, Mitzpeh Yitzhar and Yitzhar South, all located south of Nablus, Ramat Gilad-Givat Dekel in the Kedumim area, Givat Haroeh and Ma'aleh Rehavam in the area of the settlements of Eli and Shiloh, Mitzpeh Assaf near Beit-El, and Havat Maon South in the southern Hebron hills.

Settlers who received eviction orders yesterday said they were not surprised, following Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's visit to the United States. "What is surprising is how fast it happened," Tamar Asraf, of the illegal outpost of Givat Hayovel near the northern West Bank settlement of Eli said.

The eviction orders pertain to specific buildings, not the entire outpost, and are part of a judicial process intended to make evacuation easier, if such a decision is made. Barak told Army Radio that the government intends to exhaust the possibility of dialogue with the settlers, but that it must eventually meet its obligation to evacuate 22 outposts and the large outpost Migron, whose evacuation has already been agreed on with the settler leaders.


Barak also said that four "veteran" outposts had already been evacuated and the Israel Defense Forces and police are evacuating new outposts immediately after they go up.

"We will not sit and watch our houses being destroyed," Asraf said. She added that as part of their protest against evacuation, residents of the outposts near Eli would conduct a political and PR campaign.

She said people have the wrong idea that outpost settlers are lawbreakers, and are unaware that outposts are "legitimate neighborhoods of existing settlements that after they were established became illegitimate in the Talia Sasson Report."

Meanwhile, five people living at the settlement of Yitzhar who are not members of the community, one of them a 15-year-old youth, were arrested Sunday by the IDF for throwing stones at Palestinian cars. They were released under limitations after questioning.