Residents of Evyatar, an unauthorized outpost in the Shomron on the verge of being demolished by the government, reached a compromise agreement with Israeli defense officials late Tuesday night, a spokesperson for the Shomron Regional Council announced.
The over 50 families at the site agreed to voluntarily evacuate Evyatar by the end of the week. In exchange, the homes and structures at the site will not be demolished and the area will be turned into a makeshift army base. In a few months, a hesder yeshiva will be established at the site. Meanwhile, the Civil Administration will survey the land within the next six months to determine if the land is privately owned by Palestinians. If the land is confirmed as not privately owned, it will be declared as state land and Evyatar will be officially established.
The pending demolition of the outpost has been a red hot issue for the new government, which includes the pro-settlement parties of Yamina and the New Right, and is headed by Prime Minister Naftali Bennett, who served in the past as the director of the Council of Jewish Communities of Yehudah and Shomron.
Bennett and his right-wing peers wanted to avoid a forceful eviction of the site, where over 50 families have settled and a Beis Medrash, gan, homes and other infrastructure have been established. But meanwhile, many members of the coalition are ardently opposed to the settlement, especially Ra’am, the far-left Meretz, and some members of Labor. But even centrist members of the party, including Foreign Minister Yair Lapid and Defense Minister Benny Gantz, called for the demolition of the site.
Meretz MK Mossi Raz responded with outrage to the announcement of the deal, calling the Jews there “terrorists” and “criminals who stole land.”
“This is simply insanity, letting terrorist criminals decide…” Raz told Radio 103FM. “These are family members of criminals who stole land, they are truly terrorists. I prefer the outpost to remain as is rather than this fraud that is being called a compromise — this isn’t a compromise, this is capitulation.”
Raz added that the deal shows that the new government is even further to the right than the Netanyahu government, warning that he’ll leave the coalition if this right-wing trend continues.
Evyatar was established in 2013 in memory of Evyatar Borovsky, h’yd, who was killed in a terrorist attack at the Tapuach junction in the Shomron. The town was expanded in response to another terror attack at the Tapuach Junction almost two months ago, during which yeshivah student Yehuda Guetta was murdered and two others were injured.
Arabs from nearby villages have engaged in almost daily violent riots against the outpost.
(YWN Israel Desk – Jerusalem)