Residents of the embattled town of Amona in Samaria have been ordered to abandon their homes and evacuate by the end of the day.
An army order posted in Amona Monday night warns that a general closure on the town will be imposed within 48 hours.
According to the order, all property must be removed by residents before Wednesday.
“After 48 hours, no person will be allowed to enter this area or permitted to stay in it. After 48 hours, every person located in this area will be obligated to leave.”
“Owners… of any property found in the area declared [closed by this order] will be obligated to remove it.”
Earlier on Monday, residents spotted army engineers preparing a new access road from Route 60 directly to Amona – apparently the first step in the planned evacuation of the town.
As part of a compromise agreement worked out by Education Minister Naftali Bennett (Jewish Home) and Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu, the 42 families of Amona were to peacefully evacuate their homes in exchange for two things: one, passage of the Regulation Law, which would protect other Jewish communities from expulsion over ownership claims made years after their construction.
In addition, the agreement provided for the relocation of 24 of the 42 families to alternative plots on the same hill where Amona currently stands. New homes and public buildings were promised as part of the deal, as well as a new community for the remaining 18 families, who would be resettled near Shilo.
Amona residents voted to accept the agreement, and the Supreme Court granted a delay in the implementation of the evacuation orders, pushing back the demolition from December 25th to no later than February 8th.
Since the inking of the deal, however, residents say no work has yet been done on the new neighborhood promised under the agreement. Amona residents have nowhere to go.
Last week, the Supreme Court intervened, placing a temporary restraining order barring work on the plots allotted for the new neighborhood due to leftist NGOs claims that the land was private Arab land.
Supporters of Amona demonstrated in Jerusalem on Monday against the upcoming expulsion. Among those protesting the planned demolition were Jerusalem Mayor Nir Barkat, former MK Aryeh Eldad, Nobel laureate Dr. Israel Aumann, and Rabbi Haim Druckman.
In a further blow to the Amona deal, the Knesset announced on Tuesday that voting on the Regulation Law, a key component of the agreement, would be delayed yet again. While the bill was set to be voted upon this week, the Knesset declared no moves would be taken on the proposal prior to February 6th.