Ulpana Residents, Government Sign Agreement (INN) ISRAEL NATIONAL NEWS) By Elad Benari 06/20/12)
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Residents of the Ulpana neighborhood of Beit El, whose homes were
ordered to be demolished by the Supreme Court, agreed on Tuesday
evening to leave their homes willingly and non-violently. In return,
the government will keep its promise to built 300 new homes in Beit
The agreement between the residents and the government was signed
after ten days of negotiations between government representatives and
representatives from Beit El, including the town’s rabbi, Rav Zalman
Baruch Melamed, and its mayor Moshe Rosenbaum.
The agreement includes the construction of 300 housing units in Beit
El in a defined and agreed upon schedule and the establishment of a
ministerial committee that will deal with issues regarding the Jewish
settlement in Judea and Samaria (Yehuda and Shomron). The committee
is to ensure that, in future, no decisions to demolish neighborhoods
or communities are made by the government, the Attorney General or
the Ministry of Defense.
The agreement also stipulates that the homes on the disputed land
will be moved to a new location without being destroyed.
The residents of the Ulpana neighborhood clarified in a statement on
Tuesday evening that they were accepting the agreement “with a heavy
“Following a consultation by Rabbi Melamed with community leaders and
representatives of the neighborhood this evening, it was decided to
accept the government’s plan with a heavy heart,” the residents said.
“We wish to repeat the words of Rabbi Melamed, that the proposed
outline in return for construction to which the public is entitled
anyway and the government is required to deliver anyway, in exchange
for an agreement to remove the homes, is like telling a father that
his son will be taken away from him in exchange for ten others,” they
added. “The pain of the houses that are being taken away will not
cease and the stain will not be removed from the government.
“However, we are peaceful people,” the residents
emphasized. “Struggles between brothers tear the entire public, and
our community in particular, apart. We, of course, stand behind the
rabbi’s decision that the 33 families will leave their homes in a way
that obviates the need to see things that none of our people wish to
On Monday, Rabbi Melamed told his students at the Beit El yeshiva
that the struggle to settle the land of Israel is important, but
added, “Sometimes, we must understand that there are battles that
cannot be won.”
“Therefore,” he continued, “it would be best to use this terrible low
point for the betterment of all of Judea and Samaria.”
Rabbi Melamed called to avoid violence of any kind even if Beit El
leaders do not succeed in reaching an agreement with the government.
Coalition chairman MK Ze’ev Elkin told Arutz Sheva on Tuesday that
there is no legal obstacle that would impede the construction of
hundreds of new homes in Beit El.
“This obstacle that legal sources tried to put up has been dealt
with… There were difficulties, but ultimately there are those who
were elected to set policy, and those who were chosen to advise,” he
said. (IsraelNationalNews © 2012 06/20/12)
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