Israel announces suspension of OPT demolitions and promptly demolishes several structures 19Sep11 September 19, 2011

Alternative Information Centre  -  18 September 2011

During the first days of September, the Israeli military administration announced its decision to temporarily suspend demolitions in the occupied Palestinian territory, in recognition of the double standard applied for years to Palestinians and Jewish settlers. Nevertheless two days after the international media picked up this news,  the same Israeli authorities ordered several demolitions in the regions of Hebron, Nablus and Jerusalem.

 In the south hills of Hebron, soldiers demolished a zinc house with two rooms and a residential tent donated by an international NGO in Um al-Khay, a small town populated by Bedouins displaced from the Negev. The demolition meant that 20 people, 16 of them children, are now without a home. Israeli forces also destroyed in the same town a sanitary unit that had been built by an Israeli organization. More than 15 people used this facility.

 The military also showed up last Thursday (September 8) to As-Samu. This Palestinian village is in the south of the West Bank and in the middle of the Separation Wall’s projected route. According to Israeli authorities’ plans, As-Samu inhabitants will lose 10,000 dunams of land when the Wall is built. For the time being, the military continues to executive the endless demolition orders in the area. This time they destroyed one kilometer of electricity infrastructure.

 Meanwhile, just 14 kilometers east of the northern West Bank city of Nablus, Israeli soldiers demolished three agricultural cisterns in An-Nassariya. Around 1,300 people live in this village that also hosts the healthcare facilities for all the surrounding towns. Most of the people in this region depend on agriculture to live and this is exactly what the occupying forces seem to be focusing on destroying. Last July Israel demolished three wells and essential supporting infrastructure, including pumps and pipes. Even though An-Nassariya is near the city of Nablus, it is considered Area B, according to the Oslo Accords design.

 Finally four kilometers north of East Jerusalem, in the route going to Nablus, Israeli soldiers burst in the small town of Nabi Samuel on the same day. Home to 20 Muslim families and the tomb of the Prophet Samuel, Israel has declared this zone Area C and has fenced it off completely. Over the years Israeli authorities have confiscated land in the area and demolished all new construction. On Thursday the newest victim was the owner of a fruit and vegetable stand. Not only was his stand destroyed, but all his goods were confiscated. The owner later noted that this had been the fourth demolition this year. Desperate and without hope, he and his family promised to go on a hunger strike.

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