Monday, June 25, 2012

Do the Arabs have the right to build settlements in Area C

Ted Belman
YNET reorts Rights groups: State practices ‘zoning Apartheid’
    Civil rights groups advocating for Palestinian residents of the Israeli-controlled territories of the West Bank have accused the State of discriminating against villages seeking to expand.For nearly two decades, a temporary agreement between Israel and the Palestinians has allowed the Jewish state to maintain full control of Area C, a territory that stretches across 62% of the West Bank and is inhabited by 50,000 Palestinians and over 300,000 Jewish settlers.
It is important to point out that though the agreement was expected to be temporary, it would only end when the “final status” issues were agreed upon. This never happened due to the fault of the PA, and thus the agreement continues.

Yes discrimation exists which suggests it is unlawful. But it isn’t. The Jews were given the right to settle this land and so they are permitted to do so. The rights of the Arabs are determined by the Oslo Accords which in no way gives the Arabs the right to settle in Area C. That’s why the writer stresses the agreement was a temporary one. He doesn’t want to be bound by it.
Whether our High Court agrees with me is yet to be seen.
The left-wing NGO’s argue:
    “The administration has a duty, as per the international humanitarian law, to protect the lives of the occupied territory’s residents, and to make changes in a manner that would raise their quality of life.”
By doing so they resort to the humanitarian provisions of the Fourth Geneva Convention. They may or may not be interpreting it correctly. The Outpost Committee Report, soon to be released, claims that the FGC does not apply.
Furthermore, they allege a duty on Israel that simply doesn’t exist in international law. But that is not surprising as they do it all the time.
But beyond that, the PLO, representing the Palestinians, entered into the Oslo Accords which supercedes the rights under the FGC. As such, both Israel and the Palestinians are bound by it. It does not give the Arabs the right to settle in Area C.
    The Rabbis for Human Rights organization has recently petitioned the High Court of Justice to restore the Palestinian rights to build in Area C. The matter has also drawn criticism from the international community, with the European Union issuing damning reports over what it claims are discriminatory policies.
I might add that this is all part of an alliance between the EU and the Arabs to take Area C from the Jews.
Thus the Court will have to decide a) if the FGC applies and b) if it is superceded by the Oslo Accords.
While the Civil Administration has been silent on the matter, Regavim, which monitors Palestinian construction in the West Bank, has taken a strong stand:
    It dismissed the rights groups’ claims as “devoid of truth.” If discriminatory practices exist, the organization’s representatives said, they are directed against the Jewish settlers in the area. While the planning procedures for Israelis are marred in length bureaucracy, special regulations speed up the process for Palestinians.“There is no law or an international duty that requires Israel to allow the Palestinians to live wherever they like,” a spokesperson for Regavim said. “On the contrary, the international law requires Israel to maintain a professional planning system that benefits all of the area’s residents.
    “The claims made by ACRI and Bimkom are nothing more than cheap demagoguery and a cynical attempt to abuse international law to aid the Palestinians to take over more land in Area C.”
    “The groups should reveal the true political motives behind their actions instead of hiding behind the false premise of concern for human rights,”
I hope it is right. I am sure when they learn of the Outpost Committee Report, they will update their answer.

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