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IDF: Machpela House Legally Bought

IDF Civil Administration confirms purchase is legit, but says politicians need to give approval.
By Gil Ronen
First Publish: 4/1/2012, 6:34 PM

Cave of Patriarchs
Cave of Patriarchs
Israel news photo: Flash 90

Lawyers for the residents of Beit HaMachpelah in Hevron met Sunday with representatives of the IDF's Civil Administration and discussed the legality of the purchase of the home, which the residents moved into last Wednesday

The IDF representatives examined the purchase documents and confirmed that the purchase is legal. However, they said that they are awaiting the final approval of the political tier.

The answer is in line with the assessment made Friday by Rabbi of Hevron and Kiryat Arba, Rav Dov Lior. "The question now is whether Defense Minister Ehud Barak will allow the residents to stay there, regardless of whether the purchase was legal," he added.

Minister of Information and Diaspora Yuli Edelstein (Likud) said on Saturday evening that the sale of Beit HaMachpelah was undoubtedly valid.  Edelstein made the comments during a visit to the building, where he was the guest of about 70 people who had spent Shabbat at the newly purchased home near the Tomb of the Patriarchs.

Kadima MK Otniel Schneller affixed a mezuzah at the entrance to the home Sunday.