web analytics
October 2, 2014 / 8 Tishri, 5775
At a Glance
News & Views
Sponsored Post
Meir Panim with Soldiers 5774 Roundup: Year of Relief and Service for Israel’s Needy

Meir Panim implements programs that serve Israel’s neediest populations with respect and dignity. Meir Panim also coordinated care packages for families in the South during the Gaza War.



LANDMINE SUIT

PA Arabs Go to Court to Divide Efrat

When almost no Arabs stake claims to areas that were “state land” under Turkey and Jordan and now Israel, the PA tries to find another way to divide Efrat. It goes to court and claims discrimination.
Jews attempt to establish an outpost on Givat Eitam in Efrat in 2007

Jews attempt to establish an outpost on Givat Eitam in Efrat in 2007
Photo Credit: Photo by Michal Fattal/Flash90.

The Palestinian Authority made its case in the High Court Wednesday in a suit that claims the government discriminated against Arabs during a process that declared Givat Eitam in Efrat “state land.”

Givat Eitam is an area of approximately 500 acres and is so large that it has been termed “Efrat ‘B,’” where 2000 homes could be built.

The area includes approximately 75 acres bought by a Jew before the re-establishment of the State of Israel in 1948. The land was registered with the Jewish National Fund (JNF) in order to protect the identity of the purchaser, Efrat Mayor Oded Revivi told the Jewish Press.

The entire Givat Eitam, literally the “Eitam Hill,” was state land under the Ottoman Empire and during the Jordanian occupation after the War for Independence until the Six-Day War in 1967.

However, apparently trying to avoid claims it is “occupying” the area that was not under any internationally-recognized rule, Israel kept the area as a sort of “no-man’s land” and did not allow Efrat to build on Givat Eitam or even work the land as a farm.

After a nine-year process towards declaring it state land, Israel allowed all parties to stake claims. Oded said that there were nine Arab claims on different parcels of land, and one was accepted. The government rejected the other claims because the land had not been worked for 10 years.

Arabs claim that Efrat blocked them from farming the land, an assertion that is difficult to swallow because if it were true, the supposed landowners could have gone to the courts. Furthermore, if they were the landowners, why was the same area “state land” under Turkish and Jordanian rule?

PA Arabs, buoyed by Peace now and other left-wing supporters who have succeeded in winning court cases on property claims without proving landownership, found a new tactic.

They appealed to the High Court in 2009 and accused the government of Israel of discrimination in the process of declaring Givat Eitam state land.

When the court heard the case on Wednesday, lawyers for the Arabs reasoned that since the process applied only to the land that is not owned by Jews, that proves that the government’s intention was only to take over what the Arabs said is their land.

One of the judges on the three-justice panel saw through the hollow reasoning. He asked the lawyer if he really thinks that the government would declare as “state land” an area that already is proven to be legally registered by Jews.

When a judge asks that kind of question in a hearing, it usually points in the direction of the eventual ruling, which will be handed down at a future date.

The argument “shows that the Arabs did not challenge the ‘state land’ designation’ innocently, according to Oded.

Asked what would happen if the High Court rules against the government and recognizes the Arab claims, Oded sad he really does not know.

The entire issue is buried in semantics. When Haaretz’s Amira Hess reported the story earlier this week, she wrote, “Local Palestinians have also expressed concern that if the land is claimed by the state, Efrat will be expanded and Bethlehem will ultimately be cut off from Palestinian towns to the south.”

Obviously, the land will be used for homes, but the other side of the coin is that the Arabs wants to cut off one area of Efrat from the other.

The claim that Bethlehem would be cut off from other Arab villages is patently false because building on Givat Eitam would not change the current situation.

Revivi told the Chinese news agency Xinhua three years ago, after the petition was filed in court,  “Givat Eitam was declared state land three years ago, so it is not Palestinian land, and the whole city plan was laid out in 1983, for all of Efrat, so to come and say we are trying to expand is ridiculous because this was part of the original plan.”

Peace Now’s Hagit Ofran boldly admitted the facts don’t matter. She told Xinhua, “I don’t care when it was approved, it’s against Israeli interests because it makes a two-state solution much harder.”

That, of course, depends on a negotiated border of two states, something that PA Chairman Mahmoud Abbas has categorically stated that is not for negotiation.

About the Author: Tzvi Ben Gedalyahu is a graduate in journalism and economics from The George Washington University. He has worked as a cub reporter in rural Virginia and as senior copy editor for major Canadian metropolitan dailies. Tzvi wrote for Arutz Sheva for several years before joining the Jewish Press.


If you don't see your comment after publishing it, refresh the page.

Our comments section is intended for meaningful responses and debates in a civilized manner. We ask that you respect the fact that we are a religious Jewish website and avoid inappropriate language at all cost.

If you promote any foreign religions, gods or messiahs, lies about Israel, anti-Semitism, or advocate violence (except against terrorists), your permission to comment may be revoked.

No Responses to “PA Arabs Go to Court to Divide Efrat”

Comments are closed.

SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Current Top Story
Car Smashed in A-Tur
4 Women Survive Near Lynch on Mount of Olives
Latest News Stories
Car Smashed in A-Tur

A woman and three girls miraculously escaped an Arab lynch mob on Thursday afternoon while driving through the Jerusalem A-Tur neighborhood on the Mount of Olives.

Israeli PM Netanyahu and US Pres. Obama met in the Oval Office on Oct. 1, 2014.

The subtext in an Obama and Netanyahu press conference continues to be a disagreement over the role of Iran.

Jan Morgan, owner of the Gun Cave Indoor Shooting Range.

“How then, can anyone say that, the practice of Islam is protected by the U.S. Constitution?”

Jerusalem Mayor Nir Barkat puts cement on the official cornerstone celebrating the reopening of the Tiferet Israel Synagogue in Jerusalem's Old City.

Why doesn’t Obama also label Jerusalem Arabs as “illegitimate settlers?”

Israel’s President Ruby Rivlin recites Slichot, the prayers for forgiveness that are said leading up to Yom Kippur. This slichot prayer session was held at the President’s official residence. Speaking of presidential pardons, it would be good if this were the year that Jonathan Pollard was let free.

American university campuses have become fertile ground for seeds of evil.

Letter of protest charges SJP with “harassing and intimidating Jewish students.”

Biden’s new national security adviser dissed Israel in the Democratic party platform and mocks Iran’s danger.

PA leader Abbas demands UN force Israel back to 1949 Armistice Line by Nov. 2016.

Car fires are car fires,” said the Atlantic City fire chief. But the car was parked!

US admits its ‘no-strike if any civilians might be hit’ policy does not apply to its airstrikes against ISIS.

Israeli police revealed on September 30 that they are now investigating the possibility that a fellow Arab worker may have cut the cable that held Arami as he was doing exterior work on a building.

A 14-year-old Dutch Muslim high school student is suspended after posting a video saying he is “from ISIS” and wants to “behead Jews.”

PM Netanyahu and US Pres. Obama met Wednesday evening for 75 minutes at the White House in Washington DC.

Israel talks with building blocks. The Palestinian Authority throws them.

More Articles from Tzvi Ben-Gedalyahu
Jan Morgan, owner of the Gun Cave Indoor Shooting Range.

“How then, can anyone say that, the practice of Islam is protected by the U.S. Constitution?”

Jerusalem Mayor Nir Barkat puts cement on the official cornerstone celebrating the reopening of the Tiferet Israel Synagogue in Jerusalem's Old City.

Why doesn’t Obama also label Jerusalem Arabs as “illegitimate settlers?”

Car fires are car fires,” said the Atlantic City fire chief. But the car was parked!

Israel talks with building blocks. The Palestinian Authority throws them.

The Palestinian Authority continues to remove its mask and show it is Hamas in sheep’s clothing.

Netanyahu had a lot to say to Ban, but there is no indication if anyone listened.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/pa-arabs-go-to-court-to-divide-efrat/2013/03/14/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: