Israeli Settlers Reject Deal to Peacefully Evacuate Illegal West Bank Outpost of Amona

'Amona residents won't get another offer,' says government official. 'They will be evacuated very soon.'

Yotam Berger
Yotam Berger
Send in e-mailSend in e-mail
An Israeli man in a prayer shawl stands with others in the West Bank outpost of Amona, December 15, 2016.
An Israeli man in a prayer shawl stands with others in the West Bank outpost of Amona, December 15, 2016. Credit: RONEN ZVULUN/REUTERS
Yotam Berger
Yotam Berger

Some residents in the unauthorized West Bank outpost of Amona began preparing for imminent evacuation late Wednesday night after voting to reject a deal offered by the state that would prevent a violent clash with Israeli forces.

The state offered the residents of the illegal outpost, which is facing a December 25 deadline from the High Court to vacate the site, to relocate the site to nearby land if they agree to sign a commitment that they allow a peaceful evacuation. The deal that had been offered to the residents was presented by Education Minister Naftali Bennett, laying the groundwork for the construction of a number of buildings to house residents in the nearby area deemed abandoned by its Palestinian owners.

The proposal, which was supported by Attorney General Avichai Mendelblit, would give Amona's residents temporary permits, renewable every two years, to live at the new site.

Israeli youths move tyres as they construct a temporary barrier in the Jewish settler outpost of Amona in the West Bank December 15, 2016. Credit: RONEN ZVULUN/REUTERS

However, fearing that the deal would face legal hurdles after some claims have been made by Palestinians to most of the land staked out for Amona, the residents rejected the state’s proposal.

"Amona residents won't get another offer," a senior government official told Haaretz. "This is the most that can be given to them. They decided by a large majority to reject the deal. They will be evacuated very soon."

The Amona residents demand an agreement in which every home that is removed from the hill at Amona will be replaced at the alternative site immediately. The state however, will first have to examine the Palestinian claims for the land.

Israeli youths push a water tank as they construct a temporary barrier in the Jewish settler outpost of Amona in the West Bank December 15, 2016.Credit: RONEN ZVULUN/REUTERS

According to current law, when someone asserts a claim to have inherited a portion of a plot, no construction on the site is allowed until the court adjudicates the claim, allowing for potential disputes over the new area.

Sensing that action was close, dozens who support the residents in Amona arrived at the outpost and began preparing for the arrival of Israeli forces. The supporters received instructions on how to film the evacuation which residents feel could come almost immediately.

Click the alert icon to follow topics:

Comments

SUBSCRIBERS JOIN THE CONVERSATION FASTER

Automatic approval of subscriber comments.
From $1 for the first month

Already signed up? LOG IN

ICYMI

בנימין נתניהו השקת ספר

Netanyahu’s Israel Is About to Slam the Door on the Diaspora

עדי שטרן

Head of Israel’s Top Art Academy Leads a Quiet Revolution

Charles Lindbergh addressing an America First Committee rally on October 3, 1941.

Ken Burns’ Brilliant ‘The U.S. and the Holocaust’ Has Only One Problem

Skyscrapers in Ramat Gan and Tel Aviv.

Israel May Have Caught the Worst American Disease, New Research Shows

ג'אמיל דקוור

Why the Head of ACLU’s Human Rights Program Has Regrets About Emigrating From Israel

ISRAEL-VOTE

Netanyahu’s Election Win Dealt a Grievous Blow to Judaism