Hebron house
Photo: Gil Yohanan

Hebron evacuation unjustified, minister says

Interior Minister Ronnie Bar-On slams Peretz's decision to evacuate settlers from house in Hebron, says government approval needed for move

Interior Minister Ronnie Bar-On demanded on Wednesday that the cabinet hold an urgent discussion over Defense Minister Amir Peretz's intention to evacuate a Hebron house which had been taken over by settlers several weeks ago.


Bar-On claimed that Peretz has overstepped his authority when he decided on the evacuation without consulting the government, and added that the settlers' right to the property was undisputed.


Following Bar-On's demand, the cabinet will hold a meeting on the issue on Sunday.


On Wednesday, Peretz ordered the Civil Authority to issue evacuation orders for the settlers who are occupying the house. 'I'm acting within my jurisdiction,"  he said, adding that unnecessary confrontations in areas of conflict should be avoided and that the status quo must be preserved.


'Simple question of ownership'

In a letter he sent to Government Secretary Yisrael Maimon, Bar-On noted that a government decision from 1980 enables Jews to settle in Hebron. He also stressed that any decision to evacuate settlers should first get the government's approval.


According to Bar-On, the settlers' legal claim to the house had not been challenged up to his point, and the army itself did not find cause for an immediate evacuation on security grounds.


Industry, Trade and Labor Minister Eli Yishai said Wednesday during a visit in Hebron, "The settlers should not be evacuated, they have a right to the property."


"This is not a political or judicial question. There's only the simple question of ownership. The Jews who bought the house have every right to live in it, particularly when the army and the attorney general did not find any cause for an immediate evacuation."


פרסום ראשון: 04.11.07, 15:29
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