Migron settlers
Photo: Gil Yohanan

Rightist MKs blast court over Migron ruling

Decision to evacuate West Bank outpost by August 1 'proves High Court favors Arab interests over Jewish settlement,' National Union's Aryeh Eldad says. Peace Now: Step in the right direction

Right-wing parliamentarians attacked on Sunday the High Court's decision to evacuate Migron by August 1, which annulled a compromise agreement reached between the residents of the West Bank outpost and the State.


Meanwhile, left-wing organizations such as Peace Now hailed the ruling as a victory.


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In its verdict, the court rejected a bid made by the state to delay the evacuation of Migron by an additional three years. Harsh reactions from the right-wing parties were quick to follow.


Migron spokesman Itai Chemo responded to the court's verdict and said that "the people of Migron are certain that the government will find a fitting solution to the current situation after it sent its own citizens to build and settle the land."


The High Court ruled in August of last year that the Migron outpost was built on private Palestinian land and ordered the State to evacuate the outpost by the end of March.


On Sunday the judges, headed by Supreme Court President Asher Grunis, ruled that the outpost must be evacuated by August 1. The annulled compromise deal stated that the outpost's residents would voluntarily relocate to state-owned land situated on a nearby hill within three-and-a-half years.


Unlike the reserved response of the Migron settlers, several right-wing MKs responded severely to the ruling.


Aryeh Eldad (National Union) said that the High Court "proved once again that it favors the Arab interest over Jewish settlement, even at the price of shedding Jewish blood. The High Court will be responsible for any blood spilled in Migron."


MK Tzipi Hotoely of the ruling Likud party called the decision a "reward for extremists trying to split the country in half." She added that "the High Court's surrender to the demands made by the Peace Now organization is likely to take a heavy toll on Israeli solidarity."


Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu also addressed the High Court's rejection of the compromise agreement between the Migron settlers and the State, and said: "The government accepts all rulings made by the HCJ."


Peace Now, which originally petitioned the court against the legality of Migron in 2006, called the court's decision a "step in the right direction".


"The court's ruling made it clear to authorities that no one – including the government and the settlers - is above the law," said Peace Now Executive Director Yariv Oppenheimer.


Attorney Michael Sfard, representing the Palestinian petitioners who claimed ownership of the land, said that by adhering to the compromise agreement the State would be "surrendering" to the Migron settlers.


"We expect the people of Migron to respect the verdict and evacuate the outpost in a peaceful manner,” said Sfard.


Haim Erlich, director of Israeli human rights organization "Yesh Din" also welcomed the court's ruling. He said that he hoped Migron will "set a precedent for similar cases in the future and that the government will not escape its responsibility to protect the rights of Palestinian landowners."


Moran Azulay contributed to the report



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פרסום ראשון: 03.25.12, 20:45
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