Israel News for December 5, 2016

Amona Compromise
PM Netanyahu and Bayit Yehudi leader Naftali Bennet have a reached a compromise regarding the Regulation Bill that would allow the bill to be passed in the Knesset, but would remove the clause that specifically relates to Amona. That means that while all settlements built on private Palestinian land would be safe, the settlement of Amona would still need to be evacuated.

The Attorney General is working on a plan which would move the residents of Amona to unclaimed Palestinian land right near the current settlement, dubbed “Amona North”.

The attorney general is making use of a plan formulated 20 years ago by then-Military Advocate General Uri Shoham, who determined lands belonging to absentee owners can be used for a defined purpose over a short period of time. According to Shoham’s legal opinion, the lands can be “leased” for no more than three years.

Meanwhile the government will once again petition the Supreme Court for a 30 day extension to the evacuation order, which is scheduled for December 25th, which just happens to be the first day of Hanukkah.

Justice Minister Ayelet Shaked (Bayit Yehudi) praised the compromise saying, “We think that the Regulation Law is an extraordinary historic achievement, even without the Amona clause. The residents of Amona are paying a very heavy price, but this price isn’t being paid for nothing; we’re getting in return normalization for the entire settlement [movement] in Judea and Samaria.”

Amona residents, however, condemned the compromise. Rabbi Yair Frank, the rabbi of the settlement, said, ““This solution is not a solution, it’s a disgrace.”

Kerry Bashes Bill
In a speech yesterday at the Brookings Institute Saban forum, US Secretary of State Kerry bashed the regulation bill. While he conceded that settlements were not the “reason and the cause” for the Israeli-
Palestinian conflict, he did say that they are a barrier to peace.

Kerry said that those that support the regulation bill, “don’t want peace. They believe it’s the Greater Israel. They are pursuing a policy of greater Judea Samaria, building out into the West Bank, because they believe it belongs to them. And they want it to block the peace because they want those places to belong to Israel. That’s the history of the settler movement, my friends.”

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Mother Sues
Rachel Frankel, whose son Naftali was kidnapped and murdered along with two other boys in 2014, will take the witness stand in an American court on Tuesday as part of the lawsuit she filed against Iran and Syria for funding Hamas terror. The suit is claiming $340 million in damages. Frankel is an American citizen.

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