Skip To Content
Fast Forward

Israeli High Court Freezes Push To ‘Legalize’ Illegal West Bank Outposts

JERUSALEM (JTA) — The High Court of Justice froze a controversial law that legalizes West Bank outposts built illegally on private Palestinian land.

The court’s interim order, issued Thursday, postposed for two months implementation of the Regulation Law. Several Palestinian authorities had challenged the legality of the law. The government has until the end of the freeze to respond.

The law allows the government to expropriate private Palestinian land on which illegal outpost homes have been built. However, the outpost must have been built in good faith or have government support. Palestinian landowners are to be compensated financially or with other land.

Widely condemned by Israeli and foreign activists, the law could allow the government to retroactively legalize some 4,000 illegally built Israeli homes.

Ahead of the final Knesset votes on the law in February, Attorney General Avichai Mandelblit warned it violated Israeli and international law. After the law passed, Mandelblit officially notified the High Court that he would not defend the legislation if it was challenged.

Private attorney Harel Arnon replaced Mandelblit to represent the state on High Court petitions against the law, which was originally meant to save the since-razed outpost of Amona.

A message from our editor-in-chief Jodi Rudoren

We're building on 127 years of independent journalism to help you develop deeper connections to what it means to be Jewish today.

With so much at stake for the Jewish people right now — war, rising antisemitism, a high-stakes U.S. presidential election — American Jews depend on the Forward's perspective, integrity and courage.

—  Jodi Rudoren, Editor-in-Chief 

Join our mission to tell the Jewish story fully and fairly.

Republish This Story

Please read before republishing

We’re happy to make this story available to republish for free, unless it originated with JTA, Haaretz or another publication (as indicated on the article) and as long as you follow our guidelines. You must credit the Forward, retain our pixel and preserve our canonical link in Google search.  See our full guidelines for more information, and this guide for detail about canonical URLs.

To republish, copy the HTML by clicking on the yellow button to the right; it includes our tracking pixel, all paragraph styles and hyperlinks, the author byline and credit to the Forward. It does not include images; to avoid copyright violations, you must add them manually, following our guidelines. Please email us at [email protected], subject line “republish,” with any questions or to let us know what stories you’re picking up.

We don't support Internet Explorer

Please use Chrome, Safari, Firefox, or Edge to view this site.