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      Ulpana Residents Say Court Violated Law

      Two Ulpana neighborhood residents appeal to the High Court to postpone a demolition order. “Court violated Basic Law on Human Dignity.’
      By Tzvi Ben Gedalyahu
      First Publish: 5/13/2012, 12:36 PM

      Ulpana Neighborhood, Beit El
      Ulpana Neighborhood, Beit El
      Israel news photo: Flash 90

      Two residents of the threatened Ulpana neighborhood, along with the Legal Forum for the Land of Israel, have appealed to the High Court to postpone a demolition order, arguing that the court violated the Basic Law that protects “human dignity.”

      The petition also states that the High Court justices acted unreasonably in ordering the demolition of the homes before a lower court decides on a lawsuit over ownership of the land.

      The High Court has ordered the expulsion of more than a dozen of families from the 10-year-old neighborhood in Beit El, in Samaria. The petition to the court charges that the order contradicts the Basic Law of Human Dignity and Liberty, partly because the justices in effect are deciding the ownership issue before a lower court rules.

      Attorney Yossi Fuchs also emphasized that no legal action was filed against the couple, who never received any demolition orders. Like other residents in the neighborhood, they purchased their homes more than 10 years ago in good faith that the government authorization was assurance that their purchase was legal. Recently, left-wing petition argues that the alleged Arab owner did not sell the property for the house and the sale was fraudulent.

      The petition to the High Court adds that the expulsion order was issued without any discussion on compensation that would allow the family to buy a different home.

      After the expulsion of Gush Katif and northern Gaza residents in 2005, the High Court ruled that the government’s policy on compensation was so low that it violated the Basic Law on Dignity. One High Court justice later said that the decision was a landmark ruling because it set a policy of applying the Basic Law to Jews living in Judea, Samaria and Gaza.