Settlers gather for prayer in Ramat Gilad_311.
(photo credit: REUTERS/Ronen Zvulun)
The government agreed Wednesday to retroactively authorize homes located on
state land in the Ramat Gilad outpost, on the outskirts of the Karnei Shomron
settlement in Samaria.
In exchange, Ramat Gilad residents will
voluntarily remove nine structures situated in a portion of the outpost that,
according to the state, is located on private Palestinian property.
Couple leads effort to stop Ramat Gilad outpost demolition
Settlers fear razing of Ramat Gilad outpost
an important achievement,” said Karnei Shomron Council head Herzl
The deal comes as residents of three other outposts – Givat
Assaf, Migron and the Ulpana – are working to prevent the state from demolishing
their homes in the next half-year.
In response to a petition from Peace
Now, the state had promised the court that it would remove the nine Ramat Gilad
structures located on private Palestinian property, of which five serve as
family homes, by the end of this month.
Earlier this month, in response
to the same petition, the IDF demolished a caravan home and a chicken coop on
the outskirts of the Mitzpe Yitzhar outpost, near the Yitzhar settlement in
But as the IDF readied Wednesday to move against Ramat Gilad,
settlers, with the help of Minister-without-Portfolio Bennie Begin and Justice
Minister Yaakov Neeman, reached a deal with the state.
settlers will relocate nine caravans in the coming months to a portion of the
outpost that is on state land and or to a nearby area in Karnei
The state will then authorize a zoning plan for an area near the
end of Karnei Shomron that includes the Ramat Gilad outpost.
plan is approved, 11 structures that are now on state land in Ramat Gilad will
automatically be authorized.
Separately, according to security sources,
the Civil Administration of Judea and Samaria will reexamine the status of the
land in the section of the outpost that the state has designated as belonging to
private Palestinian citizens. It will also reexamine the settlement’s boundary
line, to make sure it was properly set.
Karnei Shomron resident Moshe Zar
has claimed that he purchased the Ramat Gilad land from Palestinians, but the
state has yet to recognize that purchase.
The outpost, which was
constructed in 2001, is named for Zar’s son Gilad, who was killed that year by
Palestinians in a drive-by shooting.
His daughter Michal Shoam lives with
her family in one of the outpost caravans. The Zar family also began building a
synagogue for the outpost to be named for Gilad, but the Civil Administration
ordered them to stop work on the structure, which is only partially
Dani Dayan, who heads the Council of Jewish Communities of
Judea, Samaria and the Gaza Strip, said he was glad the parties had reached an
understanding “that provides for a solution without any
Peace Now executive director Yariv Oppenheimer attacked
the deal, which he said sent the wrong message to the settlement movement –
particularly in the aftermath of the “pricetag” attacks that right wing
extremists have carried out to protest settlement home demolitions.
state, Oppenheimer said, “has surrendered to the violence of the settlers and
their political influence.”
He declared that “the lessons learned from
Ramat Gilad are clear. It will be fruitful for the settlers to continue to take
over Palestinian land, because in return for voluntary evacuations, they will
get approvals and authorizations for illegal outposts.”
disagreed. He said the price-tag attacks, particularly the one against the IDF
Ephraim Brigade base, had almost derailed negotiations for an
“The agreement was reached in spite of the violence that
occurred, and not because of it,” he said.