IDF orders residents of Amona to leave home within 48 hours

The IDF has begun to prepare for Amona’s demolition. 

The IDF on Tuesday ordered the residents of Amona to leave their homes in the next 48 hours, pending the destruction of the homes under a court order.

The IDF delivered a notice to the residents, signed by Central Command head Major General Roni Numa.

Police forces have cordoned off the area and are barring entry to anyone who is not a registered resident.

The order requires the residents to remove their property from their homes by midnight Wednesday, and gives them the chance to petition the army within 48 hours.

After this time period, the area will become a closed military zone.

Amona, built in the 1990s in Samaria, is under a 2014 court order to be evacuated by February 8 because, after it was built, it was alleged to have built on private Palestinian land.

According to an agreement reached between the residents of Amona and the government of Israel, 24 of Amona’s 42 families were to be relocated to nearby plots on the same hill where Amona now stands. The government would construct replacement homes at the new site and build a new neighborhood for the remaining 18 families at a separate location in Samaria.

These replacement plots, were to have been located on what was thought to be unclaimed land, and were to be incorporated as state land through the Absentee Property Law.

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However, Palestinians are now claiming ownership of these replacement plots. Palestinian residents of the nearby village of Silwad are expecting a hearing later on Tuesday afternoon on claims they own the land.

Amona’s residents threatened last week to renew their fight against the evacuation, saying the agreement has not come to fruition and that the government is not holding up its end of the deal.

By: Aryeh Savir, World Israel News