JERUSALEM (Dec. 21)
A week after the military government seized some 300 acres of land from the West Bank town of Beit Sahur “for military purposes, ” the military governor of Judaea and Somaria ordered yesterday that 60 acres be returned to the local residents.
The revision in the military government’s decision came in the wake of protests by Arab leaders against the land seizure. Elias Freij, the mayor of neighboring Bethlehem, told reporters the seizure of land in the West Bank was contrary to the Camp David agreements that called for the withdrawal of the army from the West Bank.
Military sources reportedly explained the revision of the earlier order as a mistake made when the first announcement of seizure was made. The partial cancellation of the seizure was made during a tour in the area by the military governor, Gen. Binyamin Ben-Eliezer.