director-general Yariv Oppenheimer on Monday slammed the composition,
findings and recommendations of the Levy Committee that found Israeli
settlement in the West Bank is legal under international law and that
the government avoid demolishing illegal outposts. "No jurist in the
world would refer to this political manifesto as a serious report," Channel 10 reported.
The committee, Oppenheimer said, was created by the Israeli Right, who made efforts to affect the selection of its members.
"The conclusion that there is no occupation proves that the committee members are living in continuous denial," he added.
Yesh Din attorney
Michael Sfard also slammed the report, saying the Levy committee was "born in sin."
Sfard said that the committee was founded in order to
authorize crime and that it fully fulfilled its task. "It is not a legal
report but an ideological report that ignores basic principles of the
rule of law," said Sfard.
"It seems as though the committee
members fell down the rabbit hole, and their report was written in
Wonderland where the law of the absurd rules - there is no occupation, no
illegal outposts, and seemingly no Palestinian state. It must be said in
the language of Alice [in Wonderland]: This is the most stupid tea
party I've seen in my life."
Responses to the report,
however, were not entirely negative. Yesha settlement council chairman
Dani Dayan praised its findings and called for the implementation of its
"It is clear that
deep, basic and serious legal work was done," Dayan told Army Radio.
"Compared to the Talia Sasson report, this time we're talking about
impartial, first rate jurists."
The report's findings should be
deeply examined and a plan for implementing its recommendations should
be presented, Dayan continued.
The report, while recommending the
legalization of illegal outposts, was critical of government policies
that allowed their establishment.
“We wish to stress that the
picture that has been displayed before us regarding Israeli settlement
activity in Judea and Samaria does not befit the behavior of a state
that prides itself on, and is committed to, the rule of law,” said the
report, which was authored by three legal experts.
MK Danny Danon (Likud) also welcomed the report, calling it "a gift for communities in Judea and Samaria." He urged Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu to act upon the report and to encourage more communities to develop in the West Bank.
"The report will remove any leftist radicalism from previous court ruling on the outposts and bury once and for all the alarming report previously submitted by attorney Talia Sasson," said Danon.
are former Supreme Court justice Edmund Levy, former Foreign Ministry
legal adviser Alan Baker and former deputy president of the Tel Aviv
District Court Tchia Shapira.
In late January, Prime Minister
Binyamin Netanyahu appointed the trio – nicknamed the “outpost
committee” – to investigate the legal status of unauthorized West Bank
On Sunday, the 89-page document they penned was given to members of the Ministerial Committee on Settlements.
Tovah Lazaroff contributed to this report.
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