Israeli Soldiers Attacked Foreign Diplomats and Elderly Palestinians
Diplomats, Elderly, Children, And Reporters Assaulted By Soldiers. Three Kidnapped
Saed Bannoura (IMEMC) , – Israeli soldiers violently attacked international diplomats, and prevented dozens of residents from rebuilding the destroyed Khirbit Makhoul village in the West Bank’s Northern Plains.
The visiting diplomats came from France, Britain, Ireland, Spain and Australia, including diplomats of the European Union’s political bureau, who tried to render aid to the displaced impoverished villagers of Makhoul. The residents of the village have been displaced by Israel three times already.
A French diplomat was violently assaulted by the soldiers and manhandled while being dragged out of an aid truck.
The Palestinian News and Information Agency (WAFA) reported, that the Israeli soldiers used excessive force against the residents who were trying to rebuild their homes and structures, and that they assaulted a French diplomat, who visited the area in solidarity with the displaced villagers.
WAFA added, that the soldiers attacked several residents, including children and elderly citizens, as well as reporters, before kidnapping three residents and taking them to an unknown location. Several residents suffered cuts and bruises after the soldiers assaulted by them.
Furthermore, the army prevented a number of international officials from entering the area, who had arrived to help the residents rebuild their residencies, sheds and shelters. The Israeli troops also confiscated several tents.
The Israeli army has illegally declared the area as having the status of a closed military zone, thus claiming legitimacy to them preventing the residents and international guests from entering the area. Khirbit Makhoul is a small Bedouin village that was destroyed on Thursday. It is the third time that the village has been raided and destroyed, and that the residents have been displaced. The village is the home to dozens of families.
Ongoing Displacement - Israel does not recognize dozens of small villages of Palestinian Bedouin tribes in the Northern Plains areas of the West Bank and near occupied East Jerusalem, as well as near Hebron and in other Palestinian areas.
With no services and without any recognition from the occupation, those villages have repeatedly been demolished, and removed, making the residents of these villages subject to an ongoing, illegal displacement of Palestinians by Israel.
Bedouin villages in the Negev are also subject to such frequent attacks and violations. Dozens of small villages have been uprooted and demolished, some tribes have been displaced and their shelters removed hundreds of times.
Around 70,000 Arab Bedouin – whose presence in the Negev dates to the seventh century – live in 35 villages which predate both the establishment of the state of Israel or historic Palestine of 1948.
Israel rejects to recognize these villages existences and considers the inhabitants as being trespassers. Basic services have been withheld from these villages. Thousands of houses have been demolished since 2011.
Palestinian Bedouins have faced decades of repression and forced removal by Israeli authorities, because of Israel´s refusal to even recognize the legitimate claims of the villagers to their ancestral land.
Saed Bannoura via International Middle East Media Center – IMEMC - Edited by Christof Lehmann