Defense Minister Benny Gantz informed the High Court of Justice last week that he was canceling the defense establishment’s initiative to allow Jewish residents to privately purchase land in Judea and Samaria. The move, reversing what had been a growing consensus in the Defense Ministry in the past few years, was intended to avoid friction with the Palestinian Authority since the repeal of the existing law would have led to an accelerated expansion of Jewish communities.
The law in Judea and Samaria is openly sided against Israel: only Jordanians, Palestinians, or “foreigners of Arab descent” are allowed to purchase land as private entities in the “west bank.” In 1971, the IDF amended the Jordanian law to allow Jews to purchase land in the liberated territories through companies, and ever since that correction, Jews are allowed to carry out real estate transactions only through companies and with the approval of the Defense Ministry’s Civil Administration.
In a separate but related story that shows Israeli citizens are not prioritized, Israel on Monday authorized some 1,300 Palestinian homes days after advancing plans to build more than 3,000 housing units for Jewish residents. The Israeli government says it is adopting a moderate approach with the aim of minimizing friction with the US – which is opposed to “settlements” – and tensions within its ruling coalition, which includes parties from across the political spectrum.
The laws in Judea and Samaria are outdated and nothing is being done to change them. As Bennett’s coalition appeases the PA Arabs, it demonstrates that Jewish residents in Judea and Samaria – living on legally owned Jewish land – are not a priority for the government. Additionally, the government is not exercising its rightful claim to Sovereignty. The application of Sovereignty over Judea and Samaria is critical now more than ever. The government’s actions mentioned here are insulting to Israelis and proves the point of how urgent it is that Sovereignty be applied NOW.
AFSI will continue to advocate for Sovereignty over Judea and Samaria and prays that it becomes a reality sooner rather than later.
To Appease the PA, DM Gantz Kills Initiative Allowing Settlers to Purchase Land Privately, by David Israel/Jewish Press, November 1, 2021
Israel authorizes over 1,000 Palestinian homes in Judea and Samaria, By AP and ILH Staff, November 1, 2021