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Jerusalem Post: "Peace Now to court: Order dismantling of Migron"

The High Court of Justice is due on Wednesday to hold a hearing on a petition by Peace Now and Palestinian landowners demanding that the state dismantle the illegal outpost of Migron.

by Dan Izenberg

Feb. 5, 2008

The High Court of Justice is due on Wednesday to hold a hearing on a petition by Peace Now and Palestinian landowners demanding that the state dismantle the illegal outpost of Migron.

Peace Now spokeswoman Hagit Ofran told The Jerusalem Post that the petitioners would agree to the state's promise to dismantle the outpost by the beginning of August on condition that it was turned into a formal ruling by the High Court itself.

In a brief to the court submitted on January 23, the state promised to forcibly evacuate the settlement by the beginning of August if it could not reach an agreement with the settlers by then. However, it added that if the talks with the settlers were going well, it might ask the court for an extension of the deadline.

Migron was established at the end of 2001. Today, about 45 families live there. The illegal outpost includes 60 structures including two permanent ones. The rest are mobile homes.

The Migron petition is the first one calling for the dismantling of an illegal outpost in which Palestinians who own land in the area seized by the settlers are among the actual petitioners. Ofran said the landowners wanted to attend Wednesday's hearing and asked for entry permits from the Civil Administration on Monday. She charged that they were forced to wait five-and-a-half hours in the cold and then told they could not receive them.

A spokesman for the Coordinator of Activities in the Territories intervened on Tuesday night and arranged for all the petitioners to attend the hearing - except for one, who is classified as a security risk.

The court will also hear a petition on Wednesday by Peace Now demanding that the state implement demolition orders against structures built without permits in two other illegal outposts, Yovel and Haresha. In its response, the state did not declare whether or not it intended to implement the orders it had issued.