Laser pointers directed at Evyatar
Laser pointers directed at Evyatarצילום: IDU public relations

As the siege of Evyatar drags on, residents have recently reported a new weapon in the nightly attempts to drive them out of their hilltop town - loudspeakers, car horns, and musical instruments are used to blast noise towards Evyatar at all hours of the night, keeping families up and fatiguing the residents on a regular basis.

Evyatar has been under siege almost since the residents broke ground there; both large crowds and single infiltrators have tried to push their way across the valley from the nearby Palestinian Authority city of Beita, forcing the IDF to station a permanent detachment there. Five such rioters have been killed in clashes with security forces so far. Rioters also direct batteries of high-powered laser pointers into Evyatar and burn rubber tires upwind of the city, covering the area in toxic fumes and starting brushfires that have threatened the city repeatedly.

A recent governmental order has added Israeli troops to Evyatar’s troubles; it is now forbidden to bring building materials or equipment into the city, and the INP has stationed a fixed checkpoint at the only access road leading into Evyatar. Officers check for forbidden building supplies and any individuals deemed to be likely to disturb the public order.

Samaria governor Yossi Dagan has been harshly critical of the order, calling it a ‘draconian move’ and saying that ‘Evyatar must be legitimized immediately, regardless of who leads the government.’ Defense minister Gantz has expressed his intentions to raze Evyatar as illegal construction and has been quoted as saying that he needs no approval from the Prime Minister’s office to order the town destroyed.