Israel Clears Illegal West Bank Outpost in Second Case Since Bennett Took Office

Hagar Shezaf
Hagar Shezaf
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Removal of furniture from mobile homes in Adirayim, Tuesday.
Removal of furniture from mobile homes in Adirayim, Tuesday.Credit: Eliyahu Hershkovitz
Hagar Shezaf
Hagar Shezaf

The Civil Administration in the West Bank removed seven mobile homes in an unauthorized settler outpost located in an abandoned military camp on Tuesday.

This marks the second time an unauthorized outpost has been cleared out since Prime Minister Naftali Bennett entered office in June, following the evacuation of Evyatar in early July. The removal of the mobile homes in Adorayim took place without any resistance from the residents.

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The Adorayim outpost was established in the South Hebron Hills in 2016 and around 100 people live there, according to residents. Additional mobile homes were placed there three months ago, and Tuesday was the last date on which it was possible to remove them according to a legal order.

The Adorayim military base was built in the 1970s after a confiscation order was issued for the land belonging to residents of the Palestinian town of Dura. It was abandoned in 2010, after which the regional council in the South Hebron Hills built a regional emergency center on its grounds. Settlers began moving into the area a few years later.

Packing ahead of the removal of mobile homes in Adirayim, Tuesday.Credit: Eliyahu Hershkovitz

On Tuesday morning, residents of the outpost petitioned the High Court of Justice with a request for an interim order to prevent the removal of the mobile homes. They argued that the homes were placed there “in coordination with government authorities in Israel, in light of the intention of the State of Israel to act to legalize the planning status of the Adorayim site.”

Supreme Court justice Uzi Vogelman rejected the petition and said the residents could submit an appeal against the confiscation of the structures in the future.

Tomel Rahamim, a resident of the outpost who moved there about three years ago from Gush Etzion, said the residents were surprised by the evacuation. The mobile homes were placed with the knowledge of the defense establishment, which even assisted in building the surrounding wall, he said.

On Monday, the residents brought in a cement mixer in an attempt to fix the mobile homes in place, believing that this would “reduce the determination of the Civil Administration,” said Rahamim. The cement mixer was confiscated by the Civil Administration before it carried out its work.

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