The Evacuation Of Migron
Israeli Settlement Policies In The West Bank And East Jerusalem
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“The Court concludes that the Israeli settlements in the Occupied Palestinian Territory (including East Jerusalem) have been established in breach of international law.”
This conclusion of the International Court of Justice (ICJ) from 2004 reflects the broad international consensus on the Israeli settlements in the West Bank. A substantial part of the international community recognizes Palestine as a state. Nevertheless, these settlements hinder the development of a viable Palestinian state.
An increasing number of countries voice their strong criticism of what they consider as illegal Israeli constructions in the Palestinian Territories. Even in Israel the legal status of some of the settlements remains disputed. The former president of the Israeli Supreme Court, Dorit Beinisch, criticized in 2008 the attempts of the Israeli government to delay the evacuation of those settlements, which are built on privately owned Palestinian land, and violate Israeli law. The Israeli Ministry of Housing and Construction has been financing the illegal construction of outposts in the occupied West Bank for years. Migron, one of the most cited examples of an illegal outpost, illustrates this. The archives of the Civil Administration, the Israeli governing body in charge of the West Bank, are full with details about the establishment of Migron. Nevertheless, it took more than nine years until the Israeli Supreme Court decided in August 2011 that the state has to evacuate the illegal outpost of Migron by March 31, 2012. A compromise between the Israeli government and the Migron residents was reached to postpone the evacuation until 2015 – but the Supreme Court voted against the plan and ordered the evacuation by August 1, 2012. But Migron represents only one of about 250 Israeli settlements and outposts in the West Bank, an area that is only half as big as the Kosovo.
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Palestinian Territories, March 29, 2012