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      Pressure on Netanyahu as Vote on Outposts Nears

      Coalition Chairman Ze'ev Elkin says legalization will be approved if ministers are allowed to vote freely.
      By Gil Ronen
      First Publish: 5/13/2012, 8:13 PM

      Givat HaUlpana
      Givat HaUlpana
      Israel news photo: Flash 90

      Coalition Chairman MK Ze'ev Elkin said Sunday that the bills to legalize outposts and neighborhoods like Givat HaUlpana may not come up for a vote in the Knesset this week, despite announcements that they would be brought before the plenum Monday or Wednesday.

      Elkin told Arutz Sheva that the vote may be postponed until next week, and that in the meantime, pressure is being applied on Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu to allow ministers freedom to vote on the matter in accordance with their consciences.

      The bills will pass only if Netanyahu grants this approval, Elkin said. Two versions of the bill are currently being advanced: one by MK Yaakov Katz (National Union), and the other by MK Zevulun Orlev (Jewish Home). The differences between them are in "nuances," Elkin added.

      According to the bills, if people bought homes on land that is private property, a court will have to be convinced by evidence that the transaction was flawed before ordering steps against the home owners, Elkin explained. In such cases, the courts will deal with the problem by awarding compensation to the previous land owners, and not by ordering the demolition of the buildings.

      Elkin explained that ministers Benny Begin and Dan Meridor object to the bills, and that he has heard that Minister Michael Eitan is also opposed to them. He said that negotiations regarding the vote are being conducted among the various ministers, including the Prime Minister.