The government can turn the situation in the Negev around – by enacting five practical recommendations that arise from the State Comptroller's in-depth and comprehensive report published today. Let's discuss the third:
3. Removing obstacles to development and construction processes: The “rural Bedouin communities” (except Tarabin and Bir Hadaj) were built on land for which there are outstanding ownership claims – land on which no Bedouin is willing to build or settle, and which cannot be utilized for the creation of infrastructure or other public installations.
The state and local authorities’ responses to the long list of lawsuits and petitions filed by Regavim, is now joined by the State Comptroller’s report; all are in agreement that the main obstacle to the development of infrastructure as well as to the building permit process is, first and foremost, the fact that towns were built on land covered by ownership claims.
The solution: The government must stop expanding municipal “blue lines” and abandon the practice of creating new communities based on pre-existing illegal squatters’ camps. The only logical path forward is to create new communities exclusively on state land, in strict adherence to all relevant professional standards for planning and infrastructure development.