JERUSALEM — Israel’s parliament passed a contentious law late Monday that allows the state to seize land privately owned by Palestinians in the West Bank and grant the properties to Jewish settlements for their exclusive use.
The measure is designed to protect homes in Jewish settlements, built on private Palestinian property “in good faith or at the state’s instruction,” from possible court-ordered evacuation and demolition.
Thousands of homes in dozens of settlements and outposts may now be protected, at least temporarily. The bill is likely headed for a high court challenge.
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu supports the legislation and has told his constituents that no government had done more for the settlers. On Monday the Israeli leader said he had informed the Trump White House that the legislation would be voted upon.
Israeli legislators in the opposition condemned the bill as reckless and warned that it would turn the world against Israel, while goading prosecutors at the International Criminal Court in The Hague to take action against the Jewish state.