Government offers settlers benefits for peaceful relocation

Government offers settlers benefits for peaceful relocation

Full details regarding compensation package for Givat Ulpana residents remain undisclosed

Ilan Ben Zion, a reporter at the Associated Press, is a former news editor at The Times of Israel. He holds a Masters degree in Diplomacy from Tel Aviv University and an Honors Bachelors degree from the University of Toronto in Near and Middle Eastern Civilizations, Jewish Studies, and English.

Protest tents outside the Givat Ulpana houses scheduled for eviction (photo by: Noam Moskowitz/ Flash90)
Protest tents outside the Givat Ulpana houses scheduled for eviction (photo by: Noam Moskowitz/ Flash90)

Government negotiators offered Givat Ulpana residents Monday night a package of benefits if they peacefully and voluntarily vacate their homes by July 1. The residents have 24 hours to respond.

One aspect of the deal included the construction of 300 new apartments on land currently occupied by a Border Police base in the Beit El settlement, Ynet News reported on Tuesday.

The tentative proposal to ensure the voluntary and non-violent evacuation of five illegally constructed buildings was announced Monday evening by Beit El’s Chief Rabbi Zalman Melamed. He said 10 buildings housing approximately 30 apartments apiece would be erected to replace the 30 apartments being demolished in Givat Ulpana. He added that a final decision would be announced in the coming 24 hours.

The buildings in Givat Ulpana are slated for destruction on July 1 by order of the High Court of Justice, after it was determined they were built on private Palestinian land.

Melamed also called for a cessation of all protest activities around the neighborhood until a decision is announced. Settler youth who have spent the last few days constructing fortifications in Givat Ulpana reportedly ceased their activities at Melamed’s request.

Dozens of teenagers and young adults had prepared to fight security forces who would come to carry out the court-ordered demolition of five of the neighborhood’s houses.

Melamed said that the emerging agreement includes significant gains for settlements in general, and Beit El in particular. Another aspect of the deal was reportedly that the Migron outpost would be evacuated on August 1, but that the buildings would not demolished.

Givat Ulpana residents participating in the negotiations declined commenting on particulars, adding that nothing was finalized.

Negotiations between the government and Givat Ulpana residents are scheduled to recommence Tuesday.

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