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MIDEAST > Jewish settlers begin leaving West Bank outpost

MIGRON - Agence France-Presse

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A Jewish settler with her children in the illegal Jewish settlement of Migron, the West Bank, 30 August 2012.  EPA Photo

A Jewish settler with her children in the illegal Jewish settlement of Migron, the West Bank, 30 August 2012. EPA Photo

Several Israeli families began leaving the West Bank settler outpost of Migron early Sunday as a court deadline for their evacuation loomed, an AFP correspondent reported.

Migron, the largest and oldest settlement outpost in the occupied West Bank unauthorised by Israeli authorities, was built on private Palestinian land and in August 2011 Israel's Supreme Court ordered that it be cleared.
 
The evacuation has been repeatedly delayed in the face of fierce settler opposition, but last week the court said the 50 or so families resident in the outpost had to be out by the end of Tuesday.
 
A handful of mostly women and children were seen leaving their homes early Sunday, although none appeared to be taking their luggage with them, the AFP correspondent reported.
 
Graffiti and signs on their homes sounded defiant tones. "Migron, we shall return," and "We will never forget Zionism," slogans read.
 
But the outpost's residents were largely silent, trying to avoid being questioned or photographed by the media scrum.
 
The Israeli military said implementation of the court order was under way.

"Several families began leaving Migron voluntarily during the night," a spokeswoman said. "The evacuation process has begun." Early on Sunday, officials began distributing the evacuation orders to the families, with scores of police officers on hand to prevent unrest.
 
In anticipation of police attempts to forcibly move the families, around 20 young settler activists, who do not live in Migron, took over a caravan at the site and were preparing to barricade themselves in, while others could be seen on the roof.
 
Some of the families placed signs on their cars saying: "Please don't take photos," in a vain attempt to dissuade the herd of press photographers on hand to cover their departure.
 
Last week, the Supreme Court said Migron must be cleared of all residents by September 4 and all the buildings removed by September 11, after rejecting an appeal by 17 of the families, who argued that they had legally purchased the land where their homes stood.
 
Settlement watchdog Peace Now welcomed the ruling as a "victory for the state of law," but the settlers described it as a "brutal rape." Israel outlaws settlement outposts built without government approval and often sends security personnel to demolish them. They usually consist of little more than a few trailers.
 
The international community considers all settlements built in the occupied West Bank -- including annexed Arab east Jerusalem -- to be illegal.

September/02/2012

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READER COMMENTS

Notice on comments

Tom Z

9/3/2012 1:28:57 AM

It amazes me how unclear people on the internet can be about what their actual opinion is... You know, other humans do read your comments. While I think it a very small step in the right direction, at least in terms of rule of law, I don't either of the two sides are actually willing to go all the way, nor trusts the other side to actually complete or suggest any viable yet harsh solutions (Like the Clinton initiative for example). Maybe after a regime change on both sides.

Lior Uziel

9/2/2012 10:18:04 PM

Dear Shmolik, Hamas is different than Stern Gang in various manners: 1.The Shtern "Gang" was an organization representing 0.1% of the Jewish population (Hence, "Gang") as opposed to the majority supported Hamas. 2. The "Gang" aimed to kill British soldiers not direct bombs and mortars at children on their way to school. 3.Google Hamas charter to verify that number 1 aim is to wipe Israel of the map. Thank God there was a "Gang" in order for you to say that Israelis were using same tactics.

Steve Anderson

9/2/2012 10:15:28 PM

It's so sad, "the Jewish children being afraid again . . . " BECAUSE of the world their Jewish parents and ancestors created. WHY can't the Israelis take responsibility for the problems they, THEMSELVES, created? They've based their entire society upon lies, deceptive propaganda, and notions of superiority. Their roots have purposefully taken hold upon the bones of innocents, some slaughtered, others robbed, their businesses and lives stolen so the superiors could have homes.

A Shmolik

9/2/2012 8:09:04 PM

Lior Uiel - "Another Rocket..." Most likelly from some Palestinian Groups, Hamas/? Whatever they are called, all of them have Irgun, Stern Gang, e.t.c. For Midwife. All that should have been a past memory by now but it's not. Then there are hundreds od "Settler" sites outside of Israel proper, build on dispossesed Land, Creating thousands of Beggars and Refugees in their own Country, all this based on ancient claims. Time has come for Israel to take stock, to make up it's mind: War or Peace!

Lior Uziel

9/2/2012 1:37:13 PM

And another nice reminder to what happens when Jewish people are forced out - another rocket exploded in a civilian populace. You wouldn't hear about it here as no one got killed. Some more Jewish children being afraid again in the morning from mortars shot at them... Nothing to upset anyone.
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