Supporters hold protest at San-Nur ruins, demanding its reconstruction

Some two hundred activists and settlers held a one-day protest on the ruins of the West Bank settlement of Sa-Nur, as part of a campaign to force the government to rebuild the community.

Sa-Nur was one of four northern Samaria settlements which the government destroyed in 2005 as part of its disengagement plan.

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Settlers entered the site of the former settlement late Monday night and were scheduled to leave on Tuesday night, according to the Samaria Regional Council.

The protest comes after the closure of the Knesset’s summer session, in which right-wing politicians failed to push forward a bill that would set the ground for the reconstruction of those four settlements: Sa-Nur, Homesh, Kadim and Ganim.

“This place still belongs to us,” said MK Shulamit “Shuli” Mualem-Rafaeli (Bayit Yehudi), who authored the bill.

She blamed Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu for torpedoing the bill, which she had attempted to place on the agenda of the Ministerial Committee for Legislation.

To show her support for the 15 families, Mualem-Rafaeli, , accompanied the families.

Israel is committed to keeping Sa-Nur and the area around it, Mualem-Rafaeli said.

She pointed out that the families chose to move into Sa-Nur on the 13th Hebrew anniversary of the start of the demolition of 21 Gaza settlements, which was followed by the razing of the four northern Samaria ones.

“I think it’s very moving that 13 years after the expulsion, 13 years of absolute darkness for the destroyed Jewish communities… we are igniting anew the light of Sa-Nur,” Mualem-Rafaeli said.

Smotrich said that the reconstruction of these four communities, which are now considered a closed military zone, is “a matter of when, not if.”

“The only question left is who is joining us,” Smotrich said.

Addressing Netanyahu, he said, “This will happen with you or without you. Join us and you will be written down in the history books as the one who led this process.”

Samaria Regional Council head Yossi Dagan, who is a Sa-Nur evacuee, said he was just waiting for Netanyahu to call and authorize him to take out building permits so that he could reconstruct the settlement.

“We will never give up until the Israeli flag permanent flies here,” Dagan said.