Jewish families will soon be allowed to populate “Beit Rachel” and “Beit Leah”, two buildings located between the Avraham Avinu neighborhood and the Cave of the Patriarchs in Hevron, Public Security Minister Gilad Erdan (Likud) announced on Friday.
Both of the buildings were purchased at full price from an Arab seller and were populated in January of 2016 by some 200 Jews. However, the Jews were evicted from the homes after just one day, when then-Defense Minister Moshe Ya'alon said there was no approval for the purchases and that such an approval was needed in order to complete the purchase and populate the homes.
A few days after the eviction, Palestinian Arabs from Hevron filed a complaint with the police, claiming that the purchase documents were forged. As long as the investigation was under way, the Israeli defense establishment could not provide an approval for the purchase.
In recent weeks Erdan ordered that the investigation of the complaint be expedited, and the investigation concluded several days ago with an explicit recommendation of the police to close the case due to the fact that there was no proof of that the documents were indeed forged.
The findings of the investigation were handed over to the prosecutor's office, and after it officially decides to close the case, the Jewish residents will be able to re-enter their homes in Hevron.
“There are many cases of Palestinians who sell homes to Jews and then claim the documents were forged due to the crazy Palestinian law under which selling land to Jews is punishable by death. Therefore, as a policy, I instructed the police to expedite the investigation of Palestinian claims against the purchase documents of the land in Hevron,” said Erdan.
“I am pleased that this investigation found nothing, and I hope that the buildings will be populated soon,” he added.
Eviction of Beit Rachel and Beit Leah in January of 2016. Video: Chaverim L'shat Tzara
Photos: Harchivi Makom Ohalech