Beit Yehonatan evacuation nears

E. J'lem home measured; occupants: Barkat's absence being exploited.

April 27, 2010 13:38
1 minute read.
Settlers rebuild the Migron illegal outpost in the

Migron settler kid 311. (photo credit: AP)


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The Jerusalem Municipality began completing its preparations for the impending evacuation of Silwan's Beit Yehonatan on Tuesday, with inspectors taking measurements at the home.

There is an outstanding court order to evacuate and seal the seven-story, Jewish-owned structure in the predominately Arab neighborhood of east Jerusalem, as it was built without the proper permits.

The occupants of the building, built with funds from the Ateret Cohanim organization, claimed Tuesday that municipal legal adviser Yossi Havilio was exploiting the fact that Jerusalem Mayor Nir Barkat was abroad in order to demolish the house without his consent.

However, Barkat's office stressed that the move was being carried out with his full knowledge and in accordance with his commitment to implementing a court order.

Is there a de facto east Jerusalem construction freeze?
Analysis: Barkat plays Samson

The building is home to eight Jewish families, and it has been at the center of a struggle between Barkat and State Attorney Moshe Lador. In late January, Lador demanded that the mayor implement the order to evacuate and seal the building. Barkat refused.

After increased pressure, the mayor announced in February that he would evacuate and seal the building, and then begin implementing outstanding demolition orders for more than 200 illegally built Arab homes in the neighborhood. In the meantime, implementation of the court order for Beit Yehonatan has continued to be delayed.

3 arrested as security forces tear down illegal structures in 3 outposts

Also Tuesday, security forces tore down several illegal structures in three West Bank outposts, including a building that settlers had named after US President Barack Obama in a symbolic show of defiance.

Police spokesman Micky Rosenfeld said that the structures violated a 10-month freeze on new construction in West Bank settlements.

The operations were carried out in Maoz Esther, Oz Yehonatan and Ramat Migron.

At the latter outpost, three arrests were made after youths burned tires and tried to disrupt the security forces.

AP contributed to this report

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