Deputy A-G Visits Threatened Beit El Neighborhood

Deputy Attorney-General visits the Ulpana neighborhood of Beit El, hears claims of local residents against an order to demolish buildings.

Elad Benari ,

Buildings in Ulpana neighborhood
Buildings in Ulpana neighborhood
Baruch Gordon

Deputy Attorney-General Michael Blass came to the Ulpana neighborhood of Beit El, north of Jerusalem, on Wednesday, to hear the claims of local residents against the government order to demolish five apartment buildings.

The Ulpana neighborhood is one of several Jewish communities in Judea and Samaria over which the threat of demolition hangs after a Supreme Court ruling. The communities were built with state cooperation, but the lands on which they stand are disputed. Legal experts have said that a reasonable solution would be compensation to any claimants who could prove ownership, since the homes have been standing for many years without being contested.

Beit El was founded in 1977 - ten years after the Six Day War - when a group of Jewish families took up residence in open land adjacent to the local IDF base.

A religiously observant community associated with the religious Zionist movement, Beit El was granted municipal status in 1997.

As of 2009, Beit El was home to some 1,200 families with a population of 5,308 – and Arutz Sheva.

This week, a solution was found for Migron, one of the other communities under threat of a demolition. In addition to the Ulpana neighborhood, the community of Givat Assaf in Binyamin is also under threat of demolition.

The Beit El residents' task force documented Deputy Attorney-General Michael Blass’ visit on Wednesday in pictures and captions.

Photos by Baruch Gordon