MK Yaakov Katz (Ketzaleh)
MK Yaakov Katz (Ketzaleh) Israel news photo: Hezki Ezra, Arutz Sheva

The Ministerial Law Committee on Sunday rejected a law proposed by National Union Chairman MK Ya'akov Katz (Ketzaleh) that would have prohibited authorities from demolishing during the nighttime hours buildings and communities against which demolition orders were issued. MKs that sponsored the law by Ketazleh included Dov Hanin, Yariv Levin, and Tzipi Hotovely.

The law was proposed in the wake of the recent demolition of Migron in the middle of the night, in which families, including infants and small children, were left homeless at 4 AM, as police and border guards carried out court orders to demolish several buildings at the site. In a statement accompanying the law, Ketzaleh wrote that “the basic right of a person to their home must not be abrogated in the middle of the night. It is impossible to accept that those who are evicted from residences – even if the eviction is justified – should be thrown out on the street without any possibility of finding alternative shelter. Indeed, even if the building is worthy of demolition, the property inside is not, and residents of these places must be given time to find alternative storage for their property.”

The law would have compensated families and individuals whose rights were violated, Ketzaleh added. “The purpose of this law is to ensure that the dignity of human beings is upheld,” he said.

Opposing the bill on the Committee were ministers Benny Begin, Yitzchak Aharonovich, Dan Meridor, Ya'akov Ne'eman, Michael Eitan, and Orit Noked. Those in favor of ending the late-night evictions included Daniel Hershkowitz and Yuli Edelstein.

Ketzaleh expressed grave disappointment at the results of the vote. “It is tragic that the government of Binyamin Netanyahu and Ehud Barak opposed this bill. The images of the barbaric invasion of the homes of families in Migron - especially when it has been proven in court that the demolitions were unjustified -  are engraved in the minds and hears of the children who witnessed them. These images join the many others that the Likud government has been responsible for over the past three years.”

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