Daily Israel Report

Arabs to Court: Tear Down Entire Beit El Ulpana Neighborhood

Beit El Mayor: “No Arab has purchased land here. It is all a manipulation by anti-Israeli elements in Europe and leftists.”
By Gil Ronen
First Publish: 6/4/2013, 10:08 AM

Ulpana home before demolition
Ulpana home before demolition
Harel Kohen

Arabs are due to submit a motion to the High Court Tuesday, demanding the complete destruction of the Ulpana Neighborhood in Beit El, IDF Radio reported. The motion comes one year after the eviction of the residents of five buildings in the neighborhood, and a decision to deconstruct and relocate the buildings.

The motion is being filed by residents of Dura al-Kara, who say that all of the buildings in the neighborhood were built on Arab land, and not just the five that are being “sawed.”

Leftist activist Dror Etkes, who is accompanying the Arabs in the court motion, said that “the state will have to decide whether it prefers a political crisis with the settlers or a constitutional crisis, at the end of which Israel will completely cease to be democratic.”

Beit El Mayor Moshe Rosenboim told Arutz Sheva that the motion is insincere and spiteful, coming as it does 15 years after the buildings had been built and populated.

"The previous motion succeeded, but they did not notice that following that, the government decided to build 300 housing units,” he said. He was referring to the motion that got the High Court to order the demolition of five buildings. Following this court decision, the government approved the construction of 300 new housing units in Beit El as compensation.

“If the land is theirs, where were they all these years?” he asked. “Let them prove that it is theirs. If they prove it is theirs, we will act according to the law, just like anywhere else in Israel: we will pay them compensation and that is it.”

Rosenboim insisted: “I can promise that no Arab had purchased land here. No Arab inherited land here or tilled land here. This is all a manipulation by anti-Israeli elements in Europe, and leftist elements in Israel.”

Rosenboim said Beit El would contact the government on the matter. “I hope that the government will learn a lesson from the previous High Court motion and reject the motion out of hand; the government has the power to reject the motion out of hand, be it based upon the Levy Committee report or by other means.”