Ignoring protests, Israel razes part of unlicensed Bedouin village in the West Bank

Sep 14, 2018

Demonstrators scuffle with Israeli police during a demonstration against Israel’s plan to demolish the Palestinian Bedouin village of Khan al-Ahmar, in the West Bank, Sept. 14, 2018. (Wisam Hashlamoun/Flash90)

(JTA) — Israeli troops razed a small part of an unlicensed village built by Bedouins in the West Bank, which the country’s Supreme Court cleared for demolition despite international protests.

The demolition of an extension comprising several houses in Khan al-Ahmar occurred Thursday night, the Palestinian Maan news agency reported.

Last week, the Supreme Court rejected a petition by village residents to halt the demolition. An injunction against the demolition expired on Wednesday.

The high court had authorized the demolition in May, since the homes were built without permits. The July injunction called on the state to review a compromise offer drawn up by the locals that would legalize the village.

The Palestinian Authority filed a claim last week in the International Criminal Court against Israel over the demolition.

On Wednesday, the European Parliament passed a resolution condemning Israel’s plans to demolish the entire village. The Parliament “calls on the Israeli Government to put an immediate end to its policy of threats of demolition and actual eviction against the Bedouin communities living in the Negev and in Area C in the occupied West Bank,” the resolution read. It passed with 320 votes for, 277 against and 34 abstentions.

A statement from the American Jewish Committee’s Transatlantic Institute condemned the European Parliament’s “unbalanced resolution castigating Israel.”

Despite tensions around the planned demolition of Khan al-Ahmar, the number of terrorist attacks against Israelis in Israel, the West Bank and Gaza decreased in August by nearly 20 percent over July, the Israel Security Agency reported.

In August, 206 attacks were recorded compared to 255 the previous month, according to the service’s monthly report on terrorist activity. Five people were injured in the attacks in August, none of them severely.

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