Yesha Residents Protest: Stop Demolitions
Hundreds of young residents of the Binyamin communities of Migron, Givat Assaf and the Ulpana neighborhood in Beit El – all slated to be demolished in the near future – marched from the Supreme Court to the Knesset on Monday, calling the MKs to thwart the demolitions.
The demonstrators carried with them a large ball, as a symbol that the ball is in the hands of the government to prevent the expulsion of these Jewish residents from their homes.
“We don’t want to be left homeless,” Aviela, a Migron resident, said. “We want Jews to be able to stay where they are.”
She said that the fate of the communities to be demolished has been left in the hands of the Supreme Court, which she called “an inappropriate venue.”
“It has nothing to do with anything the Supreme Court should be doing,” she said. “They do not decide what political policy is. That’s done in the Knesset. So we’ve come here in hopes that someone will come through and throw the ball back to the Knesset where it belongs.”
“We don’t want the politicians pushing us off anymore,” she added. “We’d like to be listened to.”
At the root of the problem are several issues: Supreme Court Dorit Beinisch has ruled recently that land in Yesha (Judea, Samaria, Binyamin) that has no proven Arab owners but is not designated as state land is to be considered Arab land by default rather than state land; the court does not consider suggesting payment or alternate land in the rare cases of Arab landowner claimants whose claim is found to be justified; the state aided in the founding of certain communities without determining their final status and the court has ruled on demolitions without that final determination.
Several MKs have already joined together to find a solution to the planned destruction in the form of legislation, while putting pressure on Netanyahu and the defense system to stop the demolitions.
The initiative is being led by National Union chairman MK Yaakov Katz (Ketzaleh), coalition chairman MK Ze’ev Elkin (Likud) and MK David Rotem (Yisrael Beiteinu). MK Yariv Levin, chairman of the Knesset’s House Committee, has also joined the initiative. Levin recently announced that he intends to submit legislation to the Knesset to prevent demolitions of Jewish homes.
Filmed by Hillel Maeir, Tatzpit & Hezki Ezra, Arutz Sheva