State rejects settlers’ petition, agrees to evacuate Hebron squatters

The State Attorney’s Office rejects a petition filed by a of a group settlers squatting in a disputed property in Hebron, and says once again the 15 families living there illegally must be evacuated from the premises.

Some 100 settlers have been living in the Machpela House adjacent to the Tomb of the Patriarchs in the flashpoint West Bank city since July 25.

The High Court of Justice has previously ruled that the property does not belong to the settlers and ordered them to vacate the property. The State Attorney’s Office came out in support of the decision.

The settlers had tried to circumvent the ruling by filing a petition with the court, claiming ownership of Machpela House. That petition was rejected by the court last month, saying the settlers lacked proof of ownership.

The legal process has been delayed due to the Jewish holidays in September and October.

While the settlers will be forced to vacate the Machpela House, the State Attorney’s Office said they would be eligible to return to the property if they locate their missing paperwork.

— Jacob Magid

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