An expanded panel of the Israeli High Court of Justice, headed by
Justice Aharon Barak, rejected on Sunday petitions against the route
of the Annexation Wall near the village of Bir Nibala, north of
The petitioners argued that the route is illegal since its passes through private Palestinian property, but the judges said that they are convinced that the route is based on security considerations rather than political motivations, Israeli online daily Haaretz reported.
Haaretz added that the judges noted that the current petitions did not fully examine the so called “gates-regime” that controls the access of the residents to their isolated agricultural lands.
According to the court decision, the army “has promised” to facilitate the entrance of the residents to their lands by operating agricultural gates.
Also, the judges stated that the petitioners have the right to appeal the court again if they are not satisfied with the ruling.
The Annexation Wall near Bir Nibala village is part of the so-called “Jerusalem envelope” which is a section of the Wall that surrounds Jerusalem. It isolates five villages trapped between the Wall's route and the Jerusalem municipal border.
The five villages are, Bir Nibala, Beit Hanina, Al Jeeb, Al Jadeera, and Qalanida. The villages have a total population of 16500 residents, some of them are bearers of Israeli identification cards.
Israel argues that roads are being paved to connect the villages ti Ramallah, and Beit Surik in the West Bank, but in any case, they will be isolated from Jerusalem.
Three of the petitions filed by the residents of the villages argued that the Wall violates the international law, and the Israeli High Court of Justice that found parts of the Wall near Beit Surik and Alfie Menashe settlement to be illegal.
The petitioners also argued that the planned route of the Wall have political motivations rather than security aspects, and that the Wall's purpose is to annex Givat Ze'ev and the nearby Israeli settlements to the jurisdiction of Jerusalem.
Haaretz also said that the Council for Peace and Security proposed an alternative route for the fence, but it was rejected as well.