Right-wing activists set up new settlement in the Negev

A disturbance broke out overnight between right-wing activists and Bedouin after the activists set up a new settlement.

 Right-wing activists hang an Israeli flag on a building they built in a new settlement named Ma'ale Paula. (photo credit: EZRI TOBY)
Right-wing activists hang an Israeli flag on a building they built in a new settlement named Ma'ale Paula.
(photo credit: EZRI TOBY)

A clash broke out between right-wing activists and Bedouin after the activists set up a new settlement near Rahat in the Negev on Tuesday night which they named Ma'ale Paula after Israel's first prime minister David Ben Gurion's wife.

According to the organizers, "Ma'ale Paula is the first in a line of settlements that will be established in the Negev. This is in response to the lack of governance in the Negev to oppose the spreading of the Bedouin Diaspora."

MK Itamar Ben Gvir arrived at the scene to "strengthen the families", and while he was there, a ruckus broke out between the activists and Bedouin. Ben Gvir responded to Bedouins' yells by shouting back: "We are the landlords here. It's ours. Whoever wants to come and live here, fine, but we are the landlords."

In a statement, Ben Gvir said that "the control Bedouin are taking in the Negev over the country's lands is a problematic phenomenon that needs to be stopped, and the solution is to establish more and more Jewish outposts that will prevent this and will state a fact in the field. Today is just the beginning."

Israel Police arrived on the scene in response to the activity. The activists were given a few hours to leave independently, but when they didn't, police started to evacuate them by force.

 A sign announcing the establishment of a settlement in the Negev called Ma'ale Paula after Ben Gurion's wife. (credit: EZRI TOBY) A sign announcing the establishment of a settlement in the Negev called Ma'ale Paula after Ben Gurion's wife. (credit: EZRI TOBY)

Around 9 a.m. the settlement was completely evacuated and two people were taken in for questioning for disrupting public order and not listening to the police.

Also on Tuesday night, 120 IDF soldiers destroyed illegal buildings in the West Bank Homesh settlement.