Wide-Scale Demolitions Planned in Revenge for Yitzhar Clashes?
Defense Minister Moshe Ya'alon has instructed IDF commanders, police forces and the civil administration, in a series of closed forums over the past several weeks, to step up demolitions of Jewish homes deemed as "illegal" in Judea and Samaria, IDF Radio reports Wednesday.
Ya'alon's move apparently follows a series of clashes between the IDF and extremists in Yitzhar, during which several homes were destroyed. The small Samaria community has accused the Minister of exacting "collective punishment" on the community for the actions of a small minority and claims that Ya'alon has specifically targeted them for destruction.
Ya'alon promised last year before the Supreme Court to order the demolition of all illegal construction in Judea and Samaria. In practice, this means that communities deemed as "violent" will be the first to see bulldozers approaching, according to the report.
Jewish communities in Judea and Samaria have allegedly been notified of the policy change, in at least two meetings which were conducted between community leaders and Defense Ministry officials.
GOC of Central Command Major General Nitzan Alon met with mayors in the region before Passover following the violent clashes in Yitzhar and clarified that clashes with defense officials would have serious consequences - more demolitions.
The head of the Civil Administration, David Menachem, also met with Jewish community leaders in Judea and Samaria several months ago. Menachem echoed the new policy, claiming that recent demolitions were the result of "violence" - and that alleged violence will be met with demolitions.
Defense Ministry officials have declined to comment on the report.