Photo Credit: Miriam Alster / Flash 90
View of the Samaria Jewish community of Havat Gilad, (Gilad Farms) January 10, 2018.

Apparently, we’re doing something right, Regavim movement officials said on Friday, in response to an extensive hatchet article in Yediot Ahronot claiming that the movement was involved in promoting the Knesset Regulation Law because it solves personal land-ownership issues for the movement’s leaders.

Yediot argues, a few days following the hearing at the High Court of Justice of arguments for and against the legislation, that Regavim initiated and promoted the law, which substitutes the demolition of homes on disputed land in Judea and Samaria settlements with the purchase of said lands from the Arab claimants at 125% of market value – the way these disputes are resolved by civil courts inside green line Israel.

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According to Regavim, the attack piece is based on a briefing given by an officer in the Civil Administration who exploited personal information available to him as part of his job, in order to discredit the activities of the Regavim movement. Movement officials noted that Regavim is known to have exposed in the courts and the Knesset many of the failures in the conduct of the Civil Administration. Many in the settlement enterprise have accused the Coordinator of Government Activities in the Territories (COGAT) of occasionally acting as the IDF arm of the Palestinian Authority.

Regavim harshly criticized the anonymous Civil Administration official who told Yediot the Regulation Law would harm Israel’s international standing. The movement’s press release suggested this conduct is a form of subversion.

“The democratic system holds that the army is subordinate to the government, and obeys its instructions,” Regavim said. “The conduct of that military official, undermining the decisions of the Knesset and the government, is subversion.”

“It is also regrettable that this official is extremely ignorant of the Regulation Law’s foundations in real estate law and international law, yet is allowed to disseminate his lies to the media. He would do well to study the detailed position of the Government of Israel that was submitted to the High Court of Justice, explaining how the law is within the framework of domestic law and the norms of international law.”

“The ‘revelation’ that Regavim is one of the initiators of the Regulation Law is a source of pride and satisfaction for us,” Regavim said in a press release. “If Yediot Ahronot attacks us with a false and misleading article, we are probably doing the right thing.”

“The information, which was presented in a tendentious manner, is intended to harm the just struggle of the movement to implement the Regulation Law, which was passed by a democratic majority in the Israeli Knesset,” the statement concluded.

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