The Security Cabinet unanimously approved the establishment of a new settlement for the former residents of Amona, an illegally constructed outpost in the West Bank that was evacuated in February.
Following the Security Cabinet’s decision, other government ministers were contacted by telephone to obtain their approval for the plan. This is the first time in 20 years that the government has decided to establish a new settlement.
The new settlement is to be established in the Shiloh Valley. Last month, would-be inhabitants of a hilltop location there, Geulat Zion—which, like Amona, is illegal—made a point of rejecting Amona residents’ moving to the area.
The former residents of Amona had been growing anxious regarding their housing istuation. They had released a statement earlier in the day saying, “We demand that the prime minister and the rest of the government unanimously support the establishment of a new settlement… at the site chosen by the residents.”
The statement added that the residents would not accept or cooperate with plans to resettle the community as part of a new neighborhood of an existing settlement.
“You destroyed our homes. Now build new ones. You signed an agreement stating that by March 31 work would begin on a new community. Fulfill that agreement,” the residents said.
Later in the day, the former residents’ tone changed upon being informed of the new settlement, which they welcomed. They released a new statement that announced, “The memory of the Amona settlement will always remain in our hearts. We love you, Homeland, so we swear on this day to return to the land of Amona—us, and if not us, our sons who will rise after us—one never leaves a homeland.
“However, from the time when Amona was destroyed, we asked only one thing: a pioneering-Zionist mission to establish a new settlement in the Land of Israel, for us and for the entire People of Israel. Only creating a reach life of prosperity of action will serve as a cure for our pain and the pain of the public for a life that was taken.”