|Havat Gilad or Gilad Farm|
|District||Judea and Samaria Area|
|Founded by||Itai Zar|
Havat Gilad (Hebrew: חַוַּת גִּלְעָד, lit. Gilad Farm) is an Israeli settlement outpost in the West Bank, beyond the jurisdiction of the Shomron Regional Council. It was established in 2002 in memory of Gilad Zar, security coordinator of the Shomron Regional Council, who was shot and killed in 2001. It is considered an unauthorized outpost by the Israeli government and is on a list of outposts that Israel promised the U.S. to dismantle. The outpost was dismantled several times but settlers have returned and re-established it. The international community considers Israeli settlements in the West Bank illegal under international law, but the Israeli government disputes this. Havat Gilad has been “adopted” by the far right kahanist U.S. organization B'nai Elim.
Havat Gilad is located on land allegedly privately owned by Moshe Zar, a religious Zionist and longtime friend of former Prime Minister Ariel Sharon. In 1984 he was convicted of membership in the Jewish Underground of the early 1980s, and sentenced to three years in prison for his part in the assassination of Palestinian mayors. He has been buying land in the West Bank from individual Palestinians since 1979. A number of Palestinians have taken him to court on claims that he falsified contracts. After his son Gilad was killed, he vowed that he would establish six settlements in his son′s memory, one for each Hebrew letter of his name.
There have been a number violent incidents involving Havat Gilad settlers. On October 16, 2002, journalists covering a so-called “quiet” evacuation at the outpost, were attacked by settlers, on Octobre 19, 2002, a Shabbath, when the outpost was forcibly evacuated and all its buildings were razed by the Israel Defense Forces for the first time, about 1,000 settlers, trying to prevent the dismantling of the outpost, clashed with soldiers and police. During the two days of confrontations 46 policemen and dozens of male and female soldiers and settlers were lightly injured. Fifteen people were arrested, but were released a few days later. Some of the settlers were back at the outpost the next day and erected temporary structures which were dismatled a week later, but the settlers were back on the site after a few hours. In November, security forces decided to file charges against twelve of the protestors. In 2004, police arrested one settler, after armed settlers from the outpost had opened fire on shepherds from a nearby Palestinian village. In March 2009, five residents of the outpost were briefly arrested on suspicion of throwing stones at police, when security forces attempted to evacuate the site. In September of the same year, settlers and security forces clashed following an attempt by security forces to confiscate a truck which was supposedly used to illegally transport a mobile home to the site, leading to four arrests. In October 2010 Havat Gilad settlers set fire to olive trees belonging to Palestinian farmers of the village of Farata.
On February 28, 2011, Civil Authority forces escorted by police officers arrived in the settlement to demolish several illegal structures. Violent clashes erupted when settlers threw rocks at police, who responded with tear gas, stun grenades, and rubber bullets, injuring 15 settlers. Eight settlers were arrested, five for carrying concealing weapons, one for stone-throwing, and two for cutting down Palestinian olive trees. The demolition of the outpost led to further protests and violence among Israeli rightists, Seventeen pro-settlement protesters, seven of whom minors, were charged with disturbing the peace, attacking police and damaging police vehicles. A week after the demolition, the destroyed structures were being rebuilt, and the settlers were said to plan to build several new homes in addition to the ones that were demolished, as an act of protest. However, the government pledged to demolish the new buildings by the end of the year.
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