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Illegal outpost gets demolition notices days after Jewish extremist attack

Security forces will be able to wreck buildings in three days’ time; men believed to have come from the outpost assaulted Palestinians and Israeli activists on Friday

File: A general view of the Givat Ronen outpost in the West Bank on October 25, 2006 (Olivier Fitoussi / Flash 90)
File: A general view of the Givat Ronen outpost in the West Bank on October 25, 2006 (Olivier Fitoussi / Flash 90)

Security forces put up demolition notices on Sunday night in the illegal West Bank outpost of Givat Ronen, days after Jewish extremists, believed to have come from the outpost, attacked Palestinians and Israeli activists nearby.

The notices allow authorities to evacuate and demolish the buildings in three days’ time.

It was not known whether the demolition orders for the outpost, located south of Nablus, were tied to Friday’s events.

Footage from the Friday incident in the Palestinian village of Burin showed a group of men, apparently from Givat Ronen, attacking left-wing activists and Palestinians with clubs and stones, wounding at least six people and burning a car.

Police Minister Omer Barlev on Sunday denounced the attack as “the organized action of a terror group.”

“It is the tip of the iceberg of a terror organization,” Barlev told Kan news.

He confirmed media reports that a police investigation was being assisted by the Shin Bet security service, the country’s internal intelligence agency.

Barlev defended the lack of arrests of perpetrators from Friday’s attack, as well as at similar recent clashes, saying it takes time before the military is called to incidents, followed by a further delay until police are alerted, and by then “the terrorists are no longer there and have disappeared.”

Public Security Minister Omer Barlev in Nazareth, November 9, 2021 (Michael Giladi/Flash90)

Speaking to the Radio 103FM station Barlev called the incident “another serious leap forward in the terror carried out by extremist settlers.”

But, he said it is quite possible that some of those involved are not even settlers but “others who arrive from other places.”

The violence drew denunciations from across the political spectrum, with several coalition lawmakers calling for the demolition of the outpost from where the assailants allegedly came.

Israeli security officials have warned that violence by Jewish extremists in the West Bank has spiked in recent months. Shin Bet officials told The Times of Israel in late December that Jewish extremist violence had increased by 50 percent over the past year.

Nonetheless, the internal political debate over the phenomenon has been divisive. Right-wing Israeli politicians have resisted referring to these attacks as “settler violence,” charging that such characterization is an attempt to besmirch all Jews living in the West Bank.

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