Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s Cabinet unanimously decided on Sunday to recognize Havat Gilad, an outpost in northern Samaria that was built in 2002, as a legal settlement.
“Today, the government will provide for the status of Havat Gilad in order to facilitate orderly life there,” Netanyahu said at his weekly Cabinet meeting on Sunday morning.
The decision to grant Havat Gilad legal status was in response to a terror attack last month in which Rabbi Raziel Shevach, a 35-year-old resident of the outpost, was murdered. He left behind a widow and 6 children.
Before the Cabinet meeting, Netanyahu had informed Shevach’s widow of his government’s decision to endorse the legalization of Havat Gilad.
“I told her that our policy is being carried out in two spheres. First, exacting justice.”
In that regard, Netanyahu touched upon the IDF’s ongoing pursuit of all those responsible for Rabbi Shevach’s murder.
“Yesterday our forces were again in action in an effort to apprehend the last of the assassins and their accomplices in the murder of Rabbi Shevach,” Netanyahu noted.
Although a purported accomplice in the terror attack was arrested in an IDF operation near the Palestinian city of Jenin on Saturday night, Israel has yet to catch the suspected ringleader in the attack, Ahmad Nassar Jarrar.
“We will not rest until we bring them to justice, and we will bring them all to justice,” Netanyahu stressed. “To those who sanctify death: We will sanctify life. This is the essence of the government’s policy.”
Netanyahu said that he and his government also want to send a message that terror attacks will do nothing to stop the aspirations of Jews to continue living in the Biblical heartland.
“Our second policy guideline is to strengthen settlement,” he continued. “Whoever thinks that through the reprehensible murder of a resident of Havat Gilad, a father of six, that he can break our spirit and weaken us, is making a bitter mistake.”