Some Jewish residents of Judea and Samaria (the West Bank) plan to rebuild an outpost near the city of Hebron which was dismantled by Israeli security forces Tuesday night. The government deems outposts such as Mitzpe Avihai, which essentially was a tin shack on a hilltop, to be illegal. The outpost had been occupied by a group of young religious men for several months, and they were joined by two familes on a nearby hilltop Tuesday.
The government took down the outpost during a week when four high level U.S. officials, including Defense Secretary Robert Gates and U.S. Middle East Envoy George Mitchell were in Jerusalem to urge the government of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to dismantle outposts and to freeze construction in Jewish communities in the West Bank and Jerusalem.
The dismantlement came after a group called the Youth for Israel Movement set up 11 new outposts on Sunday and Monday. The group claims the new outposts were created to celebrate Jewish settlers who built 11 outposts one day in 1946, two years before the modern state of Israel was born.