Demolition of Jewish homes (archive)
Demolition of Jewish homes (archive)Israel news photo

Dozens of youths from Judea and Samaria entered an IDF base in Samaria late Monday night following rumors of an imminent destruction of a Jewish community. Several were arrested.

Clashes broke out between soldiers and the protesters, who burned tires and damaged some military vehicles. Police reinforcements helped chase the youth from the base while carrying out several arrests.

In the background to the incident were reports of another government attempt to destroy a Jewish community, while officials from the Council of Jewish Communities in Judea and Samaria and from the government tried to hammer out an understanding on the legality of the communities and forestall another police expulsion of residents, usually carried out in the middle of the night with Arab workers who destroy or take away personal possessions.

Residents also heard that Defense Minister Ehud Barak had rejected or broke his word on an impending agreement, as has happened several times in the past.

The atmosphere has been highly charged since the High Court recently ordered the destruction of several communities by March even though it has been proven that some of the land involved not only was bought by Jews but also is not, and never was, legally owned by Arabs. However, the legal status of the Jewish communities has been denied because Barak has not signed necessary documents.

Monday night’s confrontation on the IDF's Ephraim base in Samaria occurred after residents of the community of Ramat Gilad heard that police were on their way to destroy their homes.

The residents told Arutz Sheva they believed "the army will attempt to throw us out of our homes and demolish them."  Messages were sent out to other residents in Judea and Samaria to arrive to the community to help prevent its destruction.

Later, it was rumored that police would focus their attention on Mitzpeh Yitzhar in northern Samaria. As of dawn Tuesday, no demolitions were reported.

After the incident at the IDF base, military spokesmen said, “The army is obligated to follow instructions of the political establishment, will continue to enforce the law in Judea and Samaria in cooperation with the police and Civil Administration, and will not be deterred by violence towards soldiers.”