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Israel moves to legalise settler outpost after attack on rabbi

Israeli Defence Minister Avigdor Lieberman [Υπουργείο Εξωτερικών/Twitter]
Former Israeli Defence Minister Avigdor Lieberman [Υπουργείο Εξωτερικών/Twitter]

Israeli Defence Minister Avigdor Lieberman submitted a proposal to the government yesterday calling for the settler outpost of Havat Gilad to be legalised in the aftermath of a Palestinian resistance attack which left one person dead, according to Ynet News.

Lieberman submitted the plan to the government which would recognise the illegal outpost in the West Bank as a fully-fledged settlement under the administration of the Samaria Regional Council.

“Today as well, Jewish settlements contribute to securing the borders and the homeland; I hope that all the relevant parties act as soon as possible to advance the move,” he said.

The plan was well received by the settler community. Some 42 Israeli families currently live in the illegal outpost, which was established by authorities as revenge for a Palestinian attack on an Israeli security official in 2002.

“We want to show our appreciation and back the government and Defence Minister Avigdor Lieberman. They should continue on this path and see it through, so that we can see the results and see a measure of comfort through building and rebirth. We hope this takes place as soon as possible,” the wife of Rabbi Meir Goldmintz, who died last week, said.

Read: Settlement rabbi urged construction on privately-owned Palestinian land

Last week, Israeli authorities approved the proposed construction of 1,122 new settler homes across the occupied West Bank. Over half of the housing units approved are to be located beyond the Green Line, which means that they impinge on land that is set to be part of the future Palestinian state.

Settlement building is regularly used as a form of collective punishment against the Palestinians, with ministers calling for increased construction after resistance attacks.

The UN has repeatedly condemned the building of Israeli settlements, which are illegal under international law, deeming them an obstacle to the peace process. Such calls have been ignored by Israel.

Read: Israel settler who killed Palestinian farmer acted in ‘self-defence’

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