Palestinian landowner doubts Migron will be evacuated

Two days before scheduled eviction, Abdel Monam Mouatan says there is no preparation on the ground for evacuation; rejects settlers' claim that they lawfully bought lands

Some 13 years after the establishment of the outpost of Migron and two days before the court's deadline for an evacuation, one of the Palestinian owners of the outpost's land is doubtful the State will implement the High Court's decision and evacuate the residents.


"I'm not optimistic," says Abdel Monam Mouatan, who resides in the nearby village of Burqa. "We feel there is a lack of seriousness in the attitude towards the court. If the decision was made, why wasn't it implemented until now?" he asks.


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As early as 2008, the State agreed to evacuate the outpost, which the High Court ruled had been built on private Palestinian land.


In the past year, the state and the settlers reached an agreement whereby the residents will be provided with alternative housing at Givat Hayekev, a project worth millions of dollars.

השם שונה לשם ערבי. מגרון, היום (צילום: אוהד צויגנברג)

Settlers change outpost's name (Photo: Ohad Zwigenberg)


However, recently some of the families claimed they had purchased their own land. A High Court hearing is scheduled for Tuesday but the government is demanding an evacuation prior to the hearing. 


Mouatan says he has seen no signs on the ground to indicate an evacuation is imminent. "I am standing right in front of Migron right now and I don't see any movement to indicate an evacuation will take place tomorrow, the day after or in three days time," he said. "We hear that the Israeli government wants to handle things quietly, without any conflicts or forced evictions."


He stressed that even if the eviction does not take place this week, he will continue to fight for the cause. "I don’t believe I will be able to access my land within a week. I believe it's a long journey. My father fought for it and died, the second landowner also fought until he died.


"The decision has no meaning unless I can access my land. I was optimistic several years ago, when the initial court ruling was issued, but nothing has happened since."

האם הקרקע תפונה עד יום שלישי? (צילום: אוהד צויגנברג)

Will outpost be evacuated by Tuesday? (Photo: Ohad Zwigenberg)


Addressing the settlers' claim that some Migron residents lawfully bought the lands from the Palestinian landowner, Mouatan says, "I know these claims but they are completely false. There's not a grain of truth in them."


The Migron residents are divided into two groups: The 33 families who have been established as residing on privately owned Palestinian land and who are required to leave immediately; and 17 families whose status remains unclear. The court will discuss their petition on Tuesday.


The parties are still negotiating an orderly evacuation prior to the High Court hearing. However, this possibility seems unlikely given recent statements by Migron residents and settler leaders against the Major-General Eitan Dangot, the coordinator of Government activities in the territories.


The residents even held a protest event in which they "replaced" the outpost's name with an Arab name so as to enhance their High Court motion. Rabbi Dov Lior visited the outpost to express his support for the residents,


Meanwhile, work is still ongoing in the Givat Hayekev caravilla site. Cabinet Secretary Zvi Hauser visited the site to oversee the progress. Migron residents claim the neighborhood is not yet ready to house them and that it is unfit for inhabitance. Sources at the Binyamin Council complained of safety hazards which would prevent the children from studying in their new neighborhood.




פרסום ראשון: 08.27.12, 00:22
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