Construction greenlighted in Efrat after Arab claims dismissed

A housing project south of Jerusalem overcame last major hurdle, as claim on land made by local Arab found to be false.

Shimon Cohen,

Building in Efrat
Building in Efrat
Flash 90

A housing project planned in the town of Efrat south of Jerusalem overcame the last major hurdle recently, when Arab claims on the land to be built upon were exposed as false.

The claim made by an Arab resident of the nearby village of Al-Khader delayed construction of the housing project by more than a year, blocking all work on the neighborhood, which is planned to include 50 residential units.

According to a report by Israel Radio, an army court of appeals demonstrated that the Arab claimant had no basis for ownership, and that the claim on the land was entirely false.

The project was organized by the future residents themselves, who commissioned a contractor to build the 50 housing units. Members of the group have already invested hundreds of thousands of shekels each into the project, making the year-long delay particularly costly for the future homeowners.

After carefully checking the status of the land selected for the project, the group obtained building permits and work began preparing the plots for construction.

At that stage the resident of Al-Khader intervened, registering a complaint with authorities, claiming ownership of the land. But as it turned out, the man’s only claim to the land was a small grove of trees he had planted there with no permit on a plot he never owned.