HEBRON, September 16, 2015 (WAFA) – Israeli forces Wednesday handed notices to demolish three houses and a residential tent belonging to Palestinian locals in the Hebron’s locality of Massafer Yatta in the southern West Bank, said a local activist.
Coordinator of the Anti-Wall and Settlement Popular Committee in southern Hebron, Rateb Jabour, said that forces, accompanied by ‘Civil Administration’ officers, stormed Massafer Yatta locality of Khirbet Khalet al-Maiyya, where they handed two locals demolition notices.
Both Mohammad al-‘Adra and Isma‘il al-Najjar were handed notices notifying them of the Israeli forces’ intention to demolish their two-storey home in Khalet al-Maiyya.
Forces also stormed the Massafer Yatta’s locality of Ein Irfa’iya, and handed local Ra’ed ‘Amur a a demolition notice for his home.
Forces also broke into al-Adra, another locality of Massafer Yatta, where they handed a Palestinian from al-Adra family a notice to tear down his tent, which shelters him and his family.
According to OCHA weekly report covering the period between 1-7 of September 2015, “On 3 September, the Israeli authorities demolished seven Palestinian-owned structures in East Tayba Bedouin community in Area C for lack of Israeli-issued building permits, displacing 9 people, including five children, and otherwise affecting 10 others.”
“This was the eighth Bedouin community targeted with demolitions in just over two weeks, from the group of 46 communities in the central West Bank at-risk of forcible transfer due to an official Israeli ‘relocation’ plan, said OCHA.
The report said that, “In the southern West Bank, dozens of demolition and stop work orders were issued in Area C, including against 18 residential structures and a donor-funded school serving 40 students in three communities in the Massafer Yatta area (Hebron) which has been designated by the Israeli authorities since the 1980’s as a closed military zone for training, also referred to as the ‘918 firing zone’. Around 1000 people currently living in this area are at risk of forcible transfer.”
OCHA argues that the planning policies applied by Israel in Area C and East Jerusalem discriminate against Palestinians, “making it extremely difficult for them to obtain building permits.” “As a result, many Palestinians build without permits to meet their housing needs and risk having their structures demolished. Palestinians must have the opportunity to participate in a fair and equitable planning system that ensures their needs are met,” it added.
UN Resident and Humanitarian Coordinator James Rawley argued the demolitions violate international law. “Demolitions that result in forced evictions and displacement run counter to Israel’s obligations under international law and create unnecessary suffering and tension,” he said. “They must stop immediately.