Compensation demanded for illegal destruction of outposts

Recently destroyed synagogue, Ramat Migron; Photo credit: Free use

Sunday, December 26, 2021, 12:28 Honenu Attorney Menashe Yado sent a letter to the legal advisor of the Civil Administration on behalf of residents of the Geulat Tzion and Ramat Migron outposts demanding compensation for the destruction of their houses in November. The residents cited that during the destruction there was great police brutality and they were shocked to discover that the destruction itself by Civil Administration personnel and border police forces was not legal. For additional recent destruction in Geulat Tzion and Ramat Migron, see here.

From the letter: “The destruction was carried out in a procedure deviating from that set by Village and Building Planning Law. The destruction was not preceded by a stop-work order, a summons to the planning committee was not sent, and there was no demolition warrant.

“Recently, the Shomron Military Court ruled that destruction without fulfilling the provisions of the planning law – as if there were a need to rule on something self-evident – is illegal. This is in addition to a long list of rulings stating that a structure must not be destroyed without a hearing. This is a norm that was implemented also concerning terrorists who carried out murderous terror attacks.”

Yado emphasized the absurdity of the situation: “This administrative standard is implemented in trials of murderers. There is no doubt that it should be implemented concerning settlers with regard to claims of legality of their buildings. In the cases at hand, the Civil Administration destroyed houses without citing the source of their authority to do so, without leaving or even presenting a document indicating authority or citing a source of the authority. The destruction was illegal, carried out illegally, and contrary to administrative obligations.”

The residents are demanding compensation of 100,000 NIS from the Civil Administration for the total of the damages: “This compensation includes the monetary damages to the destroyed buildings, the damage caused to the personal belongings in the buildings as a result of the heavy-handed operation without prior warning, and the distress to the families, including their children who experienced the trauma of the destruction without an organized procedure and without prior warning.”

In conclusion, the residents called for a stop to the selective enforcement against Jews: “The actions of the Civil Administration and the army against Jewish settlers, contrary to the explicit ruling handed down to the Civil Administration this year, without warrants, and against the law, indicates a shameful disregard for the rights of Jews.”

Over the past few weeks, houses have been destroyed and residents removed from the Geulat Tzion and Ramat Migron outposts. Security forces destroyed houses and damaged personal belongings. Severe police brutality was reported and some of the residents required medical treatment, including hospitalization.

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