Israel News

Israeli MKS Push New Bill to Legalize Unauthorized West Bank Outposts

Knesset members Bezalel Smotrich and Shuli Moalem-Refaeli from Habayit Hayehudi and coalition chairman David Bitan and MK Yoav Kish from the Likud submitted new legislation to legalize unauthorized Jewish outposts in the West Bank built on privately owned Palestinian land.

The new bill would enable the government to have the right to use private Palestinian land without taking ownership of it.

The new bill would only apply to outposts that the government was involved in establishing, such as the outpost of Amona. Its residents face a High Court eviction order which must be carried out by December 25.

Palestinians who prove ownership of land would be entitled to increased compensation.

The bill’s sponsors propose that actual ownership of the land in question would be transferred to the Israeli government procurement commissioner of the West Bank in cases in which expropriation of actual ownership of the land is not possible.

The land will then be allocated for the use of the settlement community “and within as short a time as possible the planning process and issuance of permits will be completed.” Explanatory notes state that allowing the current situation to prevail would cause serious harm to Israelis who have lived there “for many years in good faith or with state support.”

The bill will be submitted to the Ministerial Committee for Legislation next week. Approval by the committee would constitute the coalition’s support for the bill, allowing a preliminary reading Knesset vote, the first of several votes necessary for passage.



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