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August 26, 2016 / 22 Av, 5776

Posts Tagged ‘Amona’

Zionist Union MK Broshi Visits Amona Community

Tuesday, August 9th, 2016

By Tzvi Lev/TPS

Ofrah (TPS) – Zionist Union MK Eitan Broshi visited the hilltop community of Amona in addition to the nine houses in Ofra that are slated for destruction and voiced support for a political deal that would save the sites.

“The government is stammering and hesitating in regards to the future of settlement in Judea and Samaria,” said Broshi. “I hope that the Zionist Union will support any government decision to legalize the structures.”

Amona, which has 400 residents and was founded in 1995, is scheduled to be destroyed in December in the wake of a 2015 High Court of Justice ruling that determined that it was built on private Arab land. The residents of the community contend that since the state supported its establishment and installed electricity and water there, it is the state’s responsibility to figure out a solution for the residents to remain there.

“It is also unacceptable to raze nine houses in Ofra, and the state must do what it can to legalize them and to allow for normal life here,” he contended.

The state has been trying to find a solution to the Amona issue and is now attempting to relocate the community to an adjacent plot of land. The attorney general ruled on Monday that there are no legal impediments to the plan.

Broshi is the first member of the left-leaning Zionist Union party to visit Amona, a fact that was not lost on its residents. “Even Member of Knesset Broshi was honest enough to support our campaign despite the political gap between us. Even he understands that a community that the state established must remain in place,” said an Amona spokesperson.

Binyamin Regional Council Chairman Avi Roeh praised Broshi for his visit. “Eitan Broshi is a man who is dedicated to settling the regions of Binyamin, Judea, Samaria, and all of the Land of Israel,” he exclaimed. “I am happy that he has taken the time today to assist and support us.”

TPS / Tazpit News Agency

AG Recommends Evacuating Amona, Residents Hoping for Political Rescue

Monday, August 8th, 2016

Attorney General Avichai Mandelblit said on Sunday that there is no legal obstacle barring a review of the status of lands adjacent to the community of Amona in Benjamin regional council, to start a discussion of potentially moving there the residents of the community which has been slated for demolition by the end of the year by the supreme court. Mandelblit spoke at a discussion with government officials of regulating the status of Amona.

The Israeli Supreme Court ruled in 2006 that the Amona community is illegal under Israeli law, based on petitions of presumed original Arab owners of the land who had been rounded up by anti-Zionist groups like Peace Now and Yesh Din. Since then, the court has ruled again on the Amona case, ordering that the Jewish residents must be evacuated, the housing and infrastructure destroyed and the area be handed to the Arabs.

According to the Amona residents, when the community was founded in 1995 it was by a state initiative, promoted by then housing minister Natan Sharansky, who invested millions of dollars in creating an infrastructure, paving roads and promoting construction, all of it under the auspices of the state. If there were irregularities with the land purchase, it was the state’s problem, not theirs. Had they known the land was privately owned they would have stayed away, but they were told by the state to move in — let the state deal with the alleged original owners.

It should be noted that when Mandelblit was being considered for the AG appointment, he was favored by the right for his idea that in just these kinds of cases, with anti-Jewish settlement activists signing up claimants against existing Jewish communities in Judea and Samaria, and the claimants prove ownership (which is not so hard to do considering the land registration archives are kept in Ramallah, seat of the Palestinian Authority) — said claimants be compelled to accept fair market value for the property, or comparable property. Mind you, this is after some Arab real estate agent had received full pay for the same land.

Now, despite his wise recommendation on grandfathering existing Jewish communities, the AG is obviously feeling that he can’t go to battle against a clear Supreme Court ruling to demolish Amona, and so he recommends finding an alternative land not for the alleged Arab owners, but for the very real Jewish residents instead.

Amona was the site of one of the most brutal attacks of Israeli government forces on Jewish residents in the state’s history. On February 1, 2006, Amona Jewish residents and protesters were evacuated by 10,000 Israeli Police, Border Police, and Army troops. The estimated 4,000 Jews on the Amona grounds mostly consisted of youths from nearby communities. More than 300 were injured, including some 80 security personnel. Among the injured were three Knesset members. After several hours, the Amona homes had been demolished. A few girls that were evacuated accused police officers of sexual assault.

In March 2006, the Knesset parliamentary inquiry into the events at Amona determined that security forces had employed brutal force, striking protesters with clubs and charging them with horses. Internal Security Minister Gideon Ezra was criticized for preventing police commanders from testifying at committee hearings. The committee also found contradictions between the testimonies of the Army Chief of Staff and the Internal Security Minister.

Today, none of the coalition parties wants to position itself behind a similar evacuation effort, a move which could kill their political aspirations among their rightwing voters. Likud, Habayit Hayehudi and Yisrael Beiteinu officials have stated recently that this government will not permit the destruction of Amona. When the brutal evacuation took place in 2006, it was carried out by the same government that had evacuated Gush Katif in the Gaza Strip in 2005, yet another traumatic event in recent Israeli history. That government was ruled by the Kadima party, a political albatross invented by soon-to-go-comatose Prime Minister Ariel Sharon, which has since disappeared from the political map, and serves as a warning to all Israeli rightwing parties wishing to err leftward.

With that in mind, it can be expected that Prime Minister Netanyahu, Defense Minister Liberman and Justice Minister Shaked come up with a solution that keeps the Jewish settlers in place, risking the ire of the high court, as well as of Israel’s many friends in the free world. It should provide for great political theater, as these three politicians will show their ability to both capitulate and gravel while proudly standing erect. It’s time to call in the chiropractors.

JNi.Media

Plan In The Works to Transfer Residents of Amona To Alternative Location

Sunday, July 31st, 2016

By Jonathan Benedek/TPS

The Israeli government has approved a plan by the Civil Administration in Judea and Samaria to transfer the residents of Amona to another residential location of approximately 1600 dunams (395 acres) in the Binyamin region, east of Shilo.

Approximately 40 families currently live in Amona, which is located north of Jerusalem and next to the Jewish community of Ofra. The High Court of Justice found in December, 2014 that the community was built on private Palestinian land and that the residents of Amona must therefore be evacuated by the end of 2016.

The Defense Ministry has mapped out a plan to construct 140 housing units at the new site, at least 40 of which will be occupied by evacuees from Amona. However, Amona residents appear to be opposed to any compromise even at the expense of being evacuated by force.

“We strongly oppose the preparation of a neighborhood that’ll promote a population transfer of the residents of Amona,” a statement read on behalf of the community. “Any eventuality other than a resolution keeping us here may lead to a repeat of the painful images from the demolition of houses in the town ten years ago.”

on February 1, 2006, violent encounters ensued between Amona residents and their supporters, with Israeli police and security forces who arrived to follow through with an order from then Prime Minister Ehud Olmert to demolish nine permanent structures.

TPS / Tazpit News Agency

3 Armed Men Caught Near Ofra

Tuesday, July 12th, 2016

At 7 AM, the town of Ofra’s security system identified 3 armed men in the valley below the community, north of the neighborhood of Amona, in the Binyamin region

Security forces went out and captured 3 men, armed with a hunting rifle, with a bullet in the chamber.

The three have been sent to interrogation to determine what they were doing in the area – whether it was hunting or terror.

Jewish Press News Briefs

Defense Ministry to Demolish Amona, But Build Bigger Town Near Shiloh

Sunday, May 8th, 2016

The 40 families who live in the Samaria town of Amona have to find somewhere else to live by the end of this year; their town is to be demolished.

Although the town was built on land purchased — not stolen — from Arabs living in the Palestinian Authority, the deeds that prove the sale were not accepted as valid by Israel’s Supreme Court.

But officials remember the price paid over the court-ordered demolition of nine homes allegedly built on “privately owned Arab land” in 2006.

Hundreds of civilians were wounded in the clashes to defend the homes from the thousands of Israeli police and soldiers who came to destroy them. The vicious brutality of some of the security forces was caught on camera and a number of lawsuits followed; countless Israelis were permanently traumatized as well.

Media footage remains from that debacle.

This time, the Defense Ministry planned together with the Amana organization that built the town of Amona to create a new Samaria town in its stead, near the existent Jewish community of Shiloh.

If the state fulfills its promise, the new 139-home town will be built on state-owned property near the outpost of Geulat Tzion, a new community triple the size of that which they have been forced to leave.

Hana Levi Julian

Hundreds of Police Force Protesters out of Beit El Buildings [video]

Tuesday, July 28th, 2015

The government “celebrated” the 10th anniversary of the expulsion of Jews from Gaza and four Shomron communities early Tuesday morning by staging a pre-emptive sweep on hundreds of protesters who had barred themselves up in two buildings slated for demolition Thursday.

The High Court has ordered the destruction of the “Dreinoff” housing project, named after their developer, after accepting Arab and leftists’ petitions that they were erected without permits.

The court’s decision overruled the Civil Administration’s retroactive approval of the building project.

Tuesday morning’s clash was a duplicate of the expulsion 10 years and two days ago and again a year later in Amona.

Black-clad police along with Border Police used riot dispersing methods, including pepper spray, to easily but violently overcome the protesters, mostly youth, and took over the building.

More than 50 demonstrators were detained.

The military explained:

In accordance with the High Court of Justice ruling and with the goal of preparing for the evacuation and demolition of the skeleton of the ‘ Dreinoff ‘ buildings in the community of Beit El, the decision was made to deploy a Border Police force in the complex earlier this morning.

In order to prevent [settlers] from barricading themselves in the buildings and thus reduce the tension and violence in the area so as to enable the demolition to proceed as planned, a Border Police force was placed in the building.

Knesset Member Moti Yogev, whose arm was broken in the brutal police violence at Amona nine years ago, warned that the “if the Dreinoff buildings will be demolished, the court will remain in Israel but it is not certain that there will be a government,” meaning that he might urge the Bayit Yehudi (Jewish Home) party to tear down the coalition.

Agriculture Minister Uri Ariel also warned that the government is in danger and accused Defense Minister Moshe Ya’alon of breaking his promise the day before that police would not pounce on the protesters.

“Been there, done that.”

The same promise was made by then-Defense Minister Ehud Barak several years ago hours before he ordered the police to violently remove Jews from a building in Hebron. Eventually, the courts accepted appeals from Jews that the building was legally purchased

The Beit El Regional Council is planning to appeal to the High Court this week to cancel the planned demolition.

Below are four videos and three Tazpit News Agency photos of the clashes that began before dawn Tuesday, They are more suitable for viewing on Tisha B’Av.

beit-el-portest-clash-tazpit

beti-el-protyest-tazpit

beit-el-protester-tazpit

Tzvi Ben-Gedalyahu

Policeman Who Brutally Attacked Amona Protester Gets Slap on the Wrist

Monday, July 20th, 2015

A Jerusalem court handed down a sentence of six months of community service, without a jail sentence, to a policeman convicted of a brutal beating of a protester during the expulsion of residents of Amona in 2006.

Even the judge, Moti Polik, criticized the prosecution for not demanding a harsher sentence for the policemen Moti Mahagar.

IT took nine years before Israel’s screwy judicial system finally handed down the sentence, a year after the conviction and nine years after the crime.

Mahagar would not have been indicted if it weren’t for a video that showed him relentlessly using a club to beat victims entrenched in buildings during the expulsion in Samaria.

Oh yes, Mahagar also was scalped with a fine, a grand total of $7819.53 (30,000 shekels), according to today’s official exchange rate.

Tzvi Ben-Gedalyahu

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/policeman-who-brutally-attacked-amona-protester-gets-slap-on-the-wrist/2015/07/20/

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