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Israeli settlers quietly relocate Homesh yeshiva illegal outpost with Gallant approval

Defense Minister Yoav Gallant has allowed Israeli settlers to move their tent yeshiva, illegally cobbled together on the site of the demolished West Bank outpost of Homesh, to a state-owned plot of land.

Israeli settlers moved the yeshiva of the West Bank outpost of Homesh overnight Sunday from the private Palestinian land it was originally constructed on to state-owned land a few meters away. The move, greenlighted by Defense Minister Yoav Gallant, was carried out discreetly during the night. 

The settlers dismantled the tents and makeshift construction that housed the yeshiva and trailered the materials to the new location. It was the first time since the 2005 Gaza disengagement that more substantial construction effort has taken place in Homesh. 

Homesh was one of the four West Bank settlements along with Ganim, Kadim and Sa-Nur evacuated during Israel’s 2005 withdrawal from the Gaza Strip. While the disengagement law prohibited Israelis from entering the four sites, settlers have repeatedly done so over the years, especially Homesh, where they set up a makeshift yeshiva. Efforts by the settlers to maintain the structure have intensified since December 2021, when settler Yehuda Dimentman was killed by Palestinian assailants upon leaving the site.

On March 21, the Knesset repealed part of the 2005 disengagement law, allowing Israelis to visit the four dismantled sites but not to resettle them. The move, in accordance with the coalition agreement between the ruling Likud party and Religious Zionism party, was seen as a great victory for the pro-settlement camp despite heavy criticism from the United States and the European Union. 

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