Israeli court agrees to postpone demolition of illegal settlement in West Bank
Israel's High Court of Justice on Sunday agreed to the government's request to postpone the razing of illegal structures at the Bet El settlement in the West Bank, giving the government more time to inquire into the issue, Xinhua reported.
Though the demolition was set for May 1, the high court granted the government two more months for Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to examine if part of the Bet El settlement is built on a private Palestinian land, the Ha'aretz daily reported.
The claim that there were five illegal structures in Bet El was made in 2008 by the Israeli NGO Yesh Din. In April 2011 the government announced a plan to demolish the buildings within one year, but almost immediately asked for more time.
Netanyahu is being pressed by some right-wing, pro-settlers members of his coalition to stop all outpost demolitions in the West Bank. In attempts to avert a coalition crisis, Netanyahu, at the beginning of the month, told ministers that he had asked Attorney General Yehuda Weinstein to find a legal solution that would prevent the demolition of the multi-story apartment buildings.
The high court agreed to temporarily freeze the Bet El razing since the government reaffirmed on Sunday its resolution to stick to its policy of removing any illegal outposts in the West Bank.
However, Netanyahu's government legalized last week two outposts considered to be illegal structures.