Shaked to Netanyahu:
'Enough delays, let Jews in Hevron build new neighborhood'

'Every day that property of Jewish victims murdered in 1929 Hevron pogrom remains in Arab hands is a national disgrace,' says Yamina chief.

Hezki Baruch,

Jews outside of
Jews outside of
David Wilder

Yamina party chief Ayelet Shaked called on Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu Wednesday to permit Hevron’s Jewish community to build a housing project in an old marketplace which belonged to the city’s Jewish population prior to the 1929 riots.

Ahead of Netanyahu’s planned visit to Hevron, Shaked urged the Prime Minister to grant housing permits to a planned project in an abandoned wholesale marketplace.

“Enough delays,” said Shaked, “this is the time to build a Jewish neighborhood in Hevron – you have the power to do this.”

The former Justice Minister said that the property, which was owned by the Jewish community in Hevron prior the 1929 Arab riots, should be redeemed immediately.

“Every day that the property of those murdered in the 1929 massacre remains in the hands of the murderous Palesitnian mayor is a national embarrassment.”

The wholesale market in eastern Hevron, which sits adjacent to the Jewish neighborhood of Avraham Avinu, was owned by the local Jewish community in the early 20th century, but was seized by local Arab squatters after the Jewish community in Hevron was wiped out in the 1929 riots.

During the riots, in August 1929, local Arabs massacred 67 Jews in Hevron, wounded 60 more, and forced the survivors to flee the city. While some returned in the early 1930s, authorities from the British Mandate evacuated the remaining Jews from Hevron in 1936.

The wholesale market remained in Arab possession until the IDF cleared the property in 1994, after Kiryat Arba resident Baruch Goldstein shot and killed 29 Arabs in the Tomb of the Patriarchs, out of security concerns given the market’s proximity to the Jewish neighborhood of Avraham Avinu and fears of Arab reprisal attacks.

Local Jews reclaimed the wholesale market in 2001, turning the shops into makeshift apartments. Israel ultimately evicted them, however, in 2006.

Nine months ago, however, the Defense Ministry and Justice Ministry backed a legal opinion which would permit a Jewish housing project on the upper floor of the wholesale market, despite an earlier ruling which claimed Hevron’s Arab municipality had “protected tenancy” rights to the property.

Netanyahu is expected to visit Hevron Wednesday for an event marking the 90th anniversary of the 1929 Hevron Massacre.