RESIDENTS GATHER by a shed in the Amona outpost in Samaria last month..
(photo credit: MARC ISRAEL SELLEM/THE JERUSALEM POST)
Residents of the Amona outpost threatened on Sunday to renew their resistance to the February 8 evacuation of their outpost unless the Knesset passes the settlement bill.
In a letter penned to Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Education Minister Naftali Bennett, they warned that only one thing would prevent a confrontation “that you and the upper echelons are responsible for: passage of a [settlement] bill that includes Amona.”
The bill, which retroactively legalizes 4,000 settler homes on private Palestinian property, has already passed a first reading in the Knesset.
But to ensure its passage, Amona was excluded from the bill. The Kulanu party objected to its inclusion because the High Court of Justice had mandated its removal, and the party did not want to circumvent a judicial ruling.
After it passed the first reading, Netanyahu put the bill on hold because he did not want to push forward with the legislation in the final days of the Obama administration, given its intolerance for any settlement activity.
Instead, the state told the Amona families it would find a way to relocate them to another spot on the same hilltop by changing the laws of abandoned property to dissolve partnership agreements.
After Amona residents agree to government deal, protestors pray and leave the outpost
It is unclear, however, if such a change will allow construction to begin by February 8, igniting the recent unrest among Amona residents.
“Nothing has happened, not even one tractor is working here,” the families said.
“We have no choice but to renew our public battle with full force and to call on thousands of supporters to come to Amona.”
Political sources told The Jerusalem Post
that it was possible the bill would return to the Knesset