IDF soldiers outside of Beit Hamachpela building in Hebron. .
(photo credit: ENLARGE THE PLACE OF THY TENT)
Hebron settlers might have gained a reprieve to stay in a three-story apartment building known as Beit Hamachpela through Rosh Hashana.
The state had been expected on Sunday to issue its response to a settler petition to the High Court of Justice asking that they not be forcibly evicted from the structure located across the parking lot from the Tomb of the Patriarchs, which the state claims they illegally entered Instead, it asked for a week’s delay, until September 17, three days before the start of the Jewish New Year.
Attorney Yitzhak Meron, who represents the 15 Jewish families now living in the building, told the court he didn’t object to the delay.
But he asked the court to take the upcoming holidays into account in setting a date for his response to the state.
Last week, the High Court of Justice issued an injunction barring the IDF from forcibly evacuating the 15 families until legal proceedings related to the petition are completed.
The asked the court for permission to remain in the structure until completion of the bureaucratic process by which they hope to register the building in their name with the Civil Administration.
Since 2012, the Hebron Jewish community has claimed to have purchased the building from the Abu Rajab family. After a protracted five-year bureaucratic process that included an appeal, the Civil Administration has not yet registered the property to the families.
In July, the families illegally moved into the structure, even though a prior court ruling had barred them from doing so.
In August, when the IDF had not removed the families, the Abu Rajab family filed a petition to the High Court demanding that it force the removal of the settlers.
Defense Minister Avigdor Liberman has since said that the families must be removed.
The state has told the court it plans to evict the families, but wants to find a compromise through which the families will voluntarily leave the house.