Amona residents say they will build tent city to block evacuation


JERUSALEM (JTA) — Residents of the West Bank outpost of Amona said that they will build a tent city to house the thousands of people they say will come to stand between them and an evacuation of the outpost.

The residents spoke Monday evening before the start of a protest meeting. The meeting was in reaction to the Supreme Court’s decision earlier in the day that the outpost must be evacuated by Dec. 25 as originally ordered.

The decision was issued in response to a request filed last month by the State Attorney’s Office asked for a delay of seven months from the Dec. 25 deadline to evacuate Amona, saying it could not arrange alternative housing for the residents before the target date. The government indicated at the time of the request that it would go ahead with the demolition of the settlement on time if required. The request was denied.

“We call on Netanyahu, 40 families and 200 children … their lives are in your hands,” said Avichai Boaron, a leader of the Amona residents.

“If you fulfill your task, we will all stand up and salute you. If you betray it, we will stand as a fortified wall, along with our supporters from across the country who will come here to protest the evacuation.”

The outpost’s last chance appears to be the Regulation Bill, proposed by the Jewish Home party, that would legalize West Bank outposts. The bill passed the Ministerial Committee for Legislation on Sunday. It is expected to pass its first of three readings in the Knesset plenum later this week.

The U.S. State Department announced Monday that it was “concerned” over the progress of the law.

In 2014, the Supreme Court ruled that Amona, established in 1995, was built on private Palestinian land.

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