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On the Agenda

High Court orders a halt to construction of Beit El neighborhood and prevention of its inhabitation
On November 12th, High Court Justice Hanan Meltzer issued an interim order in a claim submitted by two Palestinian land owners with the assistance of the human rights organization Yesh Din. The order instructed the Beit El Municipality and the Beit El Yeshiva to halt the construction halt all construction and inhabitation, as well as any other affairs relating to the new housing units that have been built there. In his ruling, Judge Meltzer determined that it was incumbent upon the Defense Minister, the IDF, and the police to actively ensure that the vacant houses were not being populated.   
"This is a dramatic decision with significant implications for all future construction of on private Palestinian land," said Atty. Shlomy Zachary of the Yesh Din legal team."In this ruling the court showed resolve and clarity regarding the authorities' duties in the enforcement of the law concerning Palestinian property, and entrusted the authorities with a commitment to actively prevent the occupancy of the houses. As opposed to other instances in the past, we hope this time the state will act upon its duties in enforcing the rule of law."           
On October 29th, two Palestinian civilians submitted a petition with the assistance of the human rights organization Yesh Din to the High Court of Justice, demanding an immediate halt to the marketing of houses before they were sold and to demolish the houses that were built illegally on their private land. 

New report examines State Attorney's supervision of police investigation into Israeli civilians' offenses against Palestinians
Yesh Din has released a new report entitled "Too Little, Too Late," which studies the manner in which the Office of the State Attorney oversees police investigations in the West Bank and the quality of that supervision. The report reviews and critiques the two currently existing means of supervision in the State Attorney’s Office: the “Law Enforcement Team,” headed by the Deputy State Attorney (Special Assignments), and the Appeals Department in the State Attorney’s Office, which processes appeals against police and prosecution decisions to close cases without filing indictments.  The report reveals that the State Attorney’s supervision is inadequate and does not fulfill the recommendations of the various official committees that conducted inquiries into the issue. 
"Too Little, Too Late" follows the 2006 report "A Semblance of Law," as the second report in a multi-year project by human rights organization Yesh Din, to examine the reasons for the State of Israel's continuing failure to enforce the law on Israeli civilians who harm Palestinians and their property in the West Bank. The report includes recommendations for strengthening the State Attorney’s supervisory roles in the investigation of offenses by Israelis against Palestinians in the Occupied Territories.
Download the full report (pdf)    Download report's summary (pdf)     Document library: Too Little, Too Late  

Jabel Artis: Yesh Din assists Palestinians petition for realization of demolition orders adjacent to Beth-El
Two Palestinian civilians petitioned the High Court of Justice this morning, assisted by Yesh Din, demanding to immediately stop all sales of houses and demolish houses that were built illegally on their privately owned lands in Jabel Artis, just north of the settlement of Beth-El.
The petition deals with five permanent buildings and five temporary structures that were brought to this location in 2003. The buildings are being built without any permit and outside of any jurisdiction and without any outline plan. The petitioners ask  the HCJ to issue an order forcing the relevant authorities in the West Bank to immediately take all measures to prevent the continued illegal construction and to take measures at their disposal to realize the demolition orders, measures which exist but which they are refraining from enforcing, due to political reasons.
The petition exposes a new mechanism for land-grabbing in the West Bank. In the incident of Jabel Artis the IDF and the Civil Administration issued a seizure order for security reasons on the land. From that day, local landowners did not have access to the land. Settlers, however were able to invade the area and begin the building. Last August, it became clear that this was a case of mistaken identity and that the seizure order issued by the IDF Civil Administration was meant for a different location and that settlers had simply taken advantage of this mishap to build in Jabel Artis.

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