Israel works to legalize West Bank outposts before Trump arrival

Trump is expected to ask Netanyahu to curb settlement activity...

May 22, 2017 02:42
1 minute read.
BETWEEN BILLS to annex illegal outposts and overlooking the rulings of the Supreme Court, the govern

BETWEEN BILLS to annex illegal outposts and overlooking the rulings of the Supreme Court, the government has sought unilateral solutions to a complex conflict. (photo credit: REUTERS)


Dear Reader,
As you can imagine, more people are reading The Jerusalem Post than ever before. Nevertheless, traditional business models are no longer sustainable and high-quality publications, like ours, are being forced to look for new ways to keep going. Unlike many other news organizations, we have not put up a paywall. We want to keep our journalism open and accessible and be able to keep providing you with news and analysis from the frontlines of Israel, the Middle East and the Jewish World.

As one of our loyal readers, we ask you to be our partner.

For $5 a month you will receive access to the following:

  • A user experience almost completely free of ads
  • Access to our Premium Section
  • Content from the award-winning Jerusalem Report and our monthly magazine to learn Hebrew - Ivrit
  • A brand new ePaper featuring the daily newspaper as it appears in print in Israel

Help us grow and continue telling Israel’s story to the world.

Thank you,

Ronit Hasin-Hochman, CEO, Jerusalem Post Group
Yaakov Katz, Editor-in-Chief


Israel created a new committee to advance the legalization of West Bank outposts and illegal settler homes, prior to the arrival of US President Donald Trump.

Outposts have been a source of contention between Israel and past US Administrations, which had asked Israel to remove the fledgling communities, some 100 of which dot the West Bank hilltops.

In December the Knesset passed the Settlement Regulation Law, which retroactively legalized some 4,000 unauthorized settler homes — including in West Bank outposts — located on private Palestinian property. The High Court of Justice is now adjudicating the legality of that legislation.
Israelis react to controversial law legalizing settlements

In the interim, the Security Cabinet on Sunday night created a committee to deal with the overall issue within three years. It will include officials from the Prime Minister’s Office, the Defense Ministry and the Civil Administration.

A plan of how the work will be carried out and who the committee members will be, will be submitted to the government within 21-days.

Netanyahu and Defense Minister Avigdor Liberman will receive updates on the committee’s work every three months.

Trump is expected to ask Netanyahu to curb settlement activity, but Israel is likely to explain that the committee’s work doesn’t expand settlements, but retroactively legalizes already existing structures.

Separately the cabinet authorized a series of economic gestures to ease if for the Palestinians in the West Bank. Officials said that Trump had asked Israel to take a number of confidence building measures to support his initiative to restart Israeli-Palestinian talks.

This includes expanding the hours of the Allenby Bridge crossing as well as the Sha’ar Efraim checkpoint near Tulkarem. Plans will be advanced for a West Bank train, officials said.

An industrial zone will be built near the Tarkumiya Crossing. Authorizations will be given for Palestinian building and use of agriculture land in Area C of the West Bank, the officials said.

They noted that the authorizations did not indicate a change in the land’s statue and that it would still be administered by the Civil Administration. There were no security implications to any of the decisions, the official said.

Education Minister Naftali Bennett and Justice Minister Ayelet Shaked opposed the plan to increase Palestinian building in Area C, arguing that effectively it meant that territory would not eventually be within Israel’s final borders.

Related Content

Yechiel Leiter at 2019 Jerusalem Post Annual Conference.
June 18, 2019
Moving coexistence towards success


Cookie Settings