The morning of the evacuation of Ulpana Hill opened with a mass Shachrit prayer of local residents, led by Rabbi Zalman Melamed, facing the settlement of Beit El.
Some residents wearing black shirts that read “Ulpana Hill, we shall return,” held an impromptu press conference. “This is a black day for Israel,” one resident said.
Didi Dickstein told Maariv: “This is our home. It’s hard to leave home.” He announced that he would passively resist the move. “It’s a very difficult day for neighborhood residents,” he added in a pained voice. “This is a happy neighborhood, alive and full of life, which is going to be destroyed.”
Dickstein emphasized that he and his neighbors have decided to leave without violence, according to Rabbi Melamed’s instructions, but he noted that “they made us leave, we do not leave willingly, I personally do not feel I can be a partner in the evacuation. Let them come and get me.”
Meanwhile, preparations for the neighborhood evacuation are already underway. Eight trucks were hired by the Ministry of Defense to move 16 families from their homes, half of them Tuesday morning and the rest in the afternoon.
Contractors hired by the Defense Ministry have arrived and are now helping residents to pack up equipment for transfer later.
Residents who lived in the five buildings slated to be demolished, are on schedule to be moved to the site of trailer “villas” known as Caravillas which was established for them in an empty military base.
By government order, to the extent possible, the evacuation will be conducted without the presence of children.