Israeli security officials have reached an agreement with residents of an unauthorized town in Samaria aimed at avoiding the community’s demolition.
The more than 50 families now living at the outpost town of Evyatar, near Tapuah Junction in Samaria, have agreed to voluntarily evacuate, until the defense establishment can verify that the land in question is not privately owned.
The deal was reached following negotiations between Defense Minister Benny Gantz (Blue and White), Interior Minister Ayelet Shaked (Yamina), and settlement leaders, including Samaria Regional Council chief Yossi Dagan. Prime Minister Naftali Bennett gave his blessing to the deal.
Under the deal agreed to by residents of the Evyatar outpost, the residents agreed to leave the town by the end of the week, thus avoiding a complex eviction operation – one which security officials feared could lead to violence.
In exchange, the government will maintain a presence at the site, and has vowed not to demolish the homes and other structures erected at Evyatar.
Initially, the town will be used to house IDF soldiers. Later this summer, the town will be converted into a Hesder yeshiva.
Residents may also be allowed back to resettle the town, if security officials conclude that the land used is not privately owned Arab property.
As part of the arrangement, the Defense Ministry has committed to instruct the Civil Administration to complete its surveying of the land in question within the next six months.
If it is verified as not being privately owned, it will be declared state land and the town of Evyatar will be formally established.