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Army Destroys on Thursday, Pioneers Rebuild on Friday

A day after the army destroyed a Jewish neigbhorhood near Kedumim, supporters started rebuilding. Dozens were there for the Sabbath.
By Hillel Fendel
First Publish: 10/5/2008, 12:56 PM

The budding Jewish neighborhood of Shvut Ami, on the Karnei Shomron-Kedumim road, was destroyed by police and army forces on Thursday - and was built up again by Jewish pioneers on Friday.

"The More They Were Oppressed, the More They Flourished"
Shvut Ami [My Nation's Return], an on-the-ground manifestation of the connection between the Land of Israel and Jews loyal to it, was founded by several dozen pioneers nearly a year ago, on the holiday of Sukkot 5758. Located on the south side of Kedumim and the Karnei Shomron-Kedumim road, the young pioneers took up residence in several decades-old structures, renovating them somewhat in the process.

A court order prevents the buildings' actual demolition, because of their age and uncertain status, but the army has evicted the new residents many times. Each time, however, the site has been re-populated.

Recently, Shvut Ami B has also been built up, on the north side of the road, just before Kedumim. It was these temporary structures - two of them - that were destroyed on Thursday, and rebuilt on Friday.

This past Sabbath, dozens of pioneer youths and supporters spent an inspiring weekend at the site of Shvut Ami B.

Protestors Still in Jail
Meanwhile, supporters have released a status report on those arrested during the demolition and at the subsequent protest outside the local police station. Former Kedumim Mayor Daniella Weiss was released to house arrest on Friday, and will be taken before a Kfar Saba Magistrates Court judge later on Sunday. She is facing charges of "attacking a policeman," but she says the charges are totally baseless.

"I believe that the political echelons have issued orders to deal very toughly with the 'settlers' and against leading figures here," Weiss said. "I link this with the orders to confiscate weapons, police ambushes against us, the orders that forbid young fathers from being at home for months at a time, and more."

Another leading member in Kedumim, Shosh Shilo, arrested on Thursday as well, was not permitted to leave her hometown until today's court hearing in Kfar Saba. Several girls arrested at the protest were released on bail, while the custody of the young boys arrested there was extended until Monday.