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Who has time to care about mass evacuation?

Who has time to care about mass evacuation?

This article originally appeared in Haaretz – June 9, 2014 [Photo by AP]

By Amira Hass

When my column from last week was published, my friends (in the real world and on Facebook) continued on their way without showing any signs of shock. And I actually had thought that the two texts about the mass expulsion presently being planned would provoke more reactions from them.

Article continued on Haaretz.com

How Israel is trying to bypass the courts and get Bedouin off their land

How Israel is trying to bypass the courts and get Bedouin off their land

This article originally appeared in Haaretz – June 4, 2014 [Photo by Olivier Fitoussi]

“Once upon a time there was a house and a guest, a woman, came to visit.” Between a cup of tea and a cup of coffee, this is how Khalil al-Hamadeen began his story in his family’s diwan, or hosting tent, at the Sateh al-Bahr (“Sea Level”) Bedouin encampment…

Article continued on Haaretz.com

The Prawer plan, special West Bank edition

The Prawer plan, special West Bank edition

This article originally appeared in Haaretz – June 1, 2014 [Photo by Olivier Fitoussi]

By Amira Hass

What does this remind you of? Thousands of people are forced, at gunpoint, to leave their homes. They are herded together and the people with the guns force them to live together, at a level of crowding that conflicts with their way of life and of earning a living…

Article continued on Haaretz.com

Nowhere Left to Go: Bedouin of the West Bank [Photo Essay]

Nowhere Left to Go: Bedouin of the West Bank [Photo Essay]

The following are selections from a photo essay by Gabriel Romero, in association with the Alexia Foundation and ZUMA Press – launched May 26, 2014 on

The West Bank is an Israeli-occupied, Palestinian territory that is home to approximately 17,000 Bedouin tribespeople. This population is comprised of five separate tribes who are traditionally nomadic and agro-pastoralist. These Bedouin originate in the Negev Desert but, following the 1948 establishment of the State of Israel, they were forced to move from the Negev and into an area west of the Jordan River, at that time administered by Jordan. Following the 1967 Six Day War, they found themselves under the administration of an Israeli government that has occupied the area known as the West Bank ever since.

The current plight of these Bedouin is a tragic consequence of the occupation, under which they endure crippling poverty and degradation. Israel’s introduction of a separation wall in 2004, and its expansion of illegal Jewish settlements throughout the West Bank have further pushed the Bedouin into small, slum-like camps, effectively ending their nomadic existence. The Israeli government does not permit the Bedouin to build permanent structures and the army – with little or no warning – regularly destroys their temporary ones under the pretext of a violation of the law.

The future of the Bedouin throughout the West Bank is extremely uncertain. They are now facing a breakdown of their traditional culture and simply have nowhere left to go. Life has always been tough for these nomadic Arab tribes, but they now face a great challenge from the Israeli authorities settling Israeli citizens in the area.

Photo by Gabriel Romero/Alexia Foundation ©2014

A man carrying tin sheets to help repair a dwelling that was nearly destroyed during the previous day's demolitions. Dec. 10, 2013. Al Jiftlik, West Bank, Palestinian Territories. (Photo by Gabriel Romero/Alexia Foundation ©2014)


Photo by Gabriel Romero/Alexia Foundation ©2014.

Children stand on the roof of a mosque that was destroyed the day before. Dec. 4, 2013. West Bank, Palestinian Territories. (Photo by Gabriel Romero/Alexia Foundation ©2014)


A boy explores the ruins of his newly demolished home in the Bedouin camp of Al Auja. Dec. 4, 2013. West Bank, Palestinian Territories. (Photo by Gabriel Romero/Alexia Foundation ©2014)


A village elder in the ruins of his home in Al Auja that was destroyed the night before by the Israeli army. Dec. 4, 2013. West Bank, Palestinian Territories. (Photo by Gabriel Romero/Alexia Foundation ©2014)


A dead sheep that lived through the bulldozing of a pen that killed over thirty other sheep, only to die the next day from its injuries. Dec. 4, 2013. West Bank, Palestinian Territories. (Photo by Gabriel Romero/Alexia Foundation ©2014)

Photo by Gabriel Romero/Alexia Foundation ©2014.

A barefoot girl in the dust and rocks of her camp at Wadi Meleh. Nov. 25, 2013. West Bank, Palestinian Territories. (Photo by Gabriel Romero/Alexia Foundation ©2014)


(Photo by Gabriel Romero/Alexia Foundation ©2014)

A man takes a break from repairing an animal pen to roll a Bedouin cigarette, which consists of tobacco and heishi. West Bank, Palestinian Territories. (Photo by Gabriel Romero/Alexia Foundation ©2014)


Photo by Gabriel Romero/Alexia Foundation ©2014.

A Bedouin family forced to live in their animal pen after the Israeli army had destroyed their home. Dec. 21, 2013. West Bank, Palestinian Territories. (Photo by Gabriel Romero/Alexia Foundation ©2014)


Photo by Gabriel Romero/Alexia Foundation ©2014.

An elder of Al Ram stands in front of the separation wall, which has resulted in his village having only a small fraction of the grazing land they once had. The introduction of the wall has had perhaps the greatest impact on their lives in the modern era. Dec. 21, 2013. West Bank, Palestinian Territories. (Photo by Gabriel Romero/Alexia Foundation ©2014)

Check out the full-photo essay “Nowhere Left to Go” and more of Gabriel’s work at:

Gabriel Romero - PhotographerGABRIEL ROMERO is based in Los Angeles, California, and is represented by ZUMA Press. He specializes in local and international news in the areas of conflict, environmental, and humanitarian coverage. Most recently his work has focused on Middle Eastern issues. (© Gabriel Romero /




The crude voices of the expulsion committee [Editorial]

The crude voices of the expulsion committee [Editorial]

This article originally appeared in Haaretz – May 22, 2014 [Photo by Mairav Zonszein]

By Haaretz Editorial Staff

The Knesset Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee’s subcommittee on Judea and Samaria has spent several months debating illegal Palestinian construction in Area C of the West Bank, which is under full Israeli control. The minutes of a closed meeting of this panel on April 27 (disclosed by Amira Hass in yesterday’s Haaretz) reveal the blunt language used by some attendees. This includes mention of “throw[ing] out” and “kick[ing] back” the Palestinians, references to Palestinian communities as “weeds” and to foreign states and international organizations that “incit[e] the Arabs,” and “I don’t understand how you got to such astronomical figures for the Bedouin.”

The language matched the substance of the meeting: MKs Moyi Yogev and Orit Strock of Habayit Hayehudi, the only two committee members who showed up, along with representatives of the settlers, complained about what they saw as the helplessness and neglect of the authorities which enabled Palestinians to remain in areas where they had lived before 1967.

Responding to the complaints and demands were the Coordinator of Government Activities in the Territories, Maj. Gen. Yoav Mordechai, and representatives of the Israel Defense Forces, the Israel Police and the ministries of justice, the interior and foreign affairs. Mordechai argued with some of the participants’ assumptions, stressing that the law must also be enforced against settlers in the West Bank, but there’s no way of knowing, at least from the minutes, whether Mordechai or the other government representatives protested the crude and racist remarks.

By contrast, the minutes do show that those attending agree on a common goal: to clear the Palestinians out of most of Area C and force them into the enclaves of areas A and B. Several past and current methods of achieving this were discussed. These included designating areas as live-fire zones and conducting military exercises in them; declaring public Palestinian land as Israeli state land and allocating it solely to Jews; designating land as in the process of being surveyed and therefore of uncertain status, and then permitting settlers to use it; restricting or rejecting Palestinian master plans; refusing to connect communities to water or electricity; destroying wells and the forced evacuation of Bedouin, who are resettled in crowded towns.

Removing the Palestinian population from Area C is forbidden by international law, as the European Union has repeatedly declared. It’s no surprise that the two committee members in attendance demanded that Israel get tough with international organizations that help Palestinians remain on their lands. What is surprising is that opposition MKs on the Knesset Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee are ignoring this subcommittee. Their presence will not change the position of Habayit Hayehudi, but they can at least make it clear to government officials that there are other parts of the Israeli public that understand that expulsions from and annexations of Area C will scuttle any prospects for peace.

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IDF uses live-fire zones to expel Palestinians from areas of West Bank, officer admits

IDF uses live-fire zones to expel Palestinians from areas of West Bank, officer admits

This article originally appeared in Haaretz – May 21, 2014 [Photo by Mairav Zonszein]

By Amira Hass

Military training in live-fire zones in the West Bank is used as a way of reducing the number of Palestinians living nearby, and serves as an important part of the campaign against Palestinian illegal construction, an army officer revealed at a recent Knesset committee meeting…

Article continued on Haaretz.com


Bedouins around Ma’ale Adumim: the Khan al-Ahmar Community and School

Bedouins around Ma’ale Adumim: the Khan al-Ahmar Community and School

The following is an excerpt from a B’Tselem article on Area C, entitled, “The Bedouins around Ma’ale Adumim,” originally posted November 2013 and updated May 18, 2014.
[Photo: Khan al-Ahmar School, Sept. 2011. By Anne Paq]

In early 2012 the State advised that the Civil Administration had conducted a risk assessment regarding the relocation of the Jahalin to a site near the garbage dump, and only when the report is complete would a decision be made regarding final approval of the plan. In the meantime, no action would be taken on the ground, and if a decision is made to move forward with the plan, it would be resubmitted for objections and the petitioners would be able to register their objections.  Following this announcement, the petition was voided by agreement of the parties, emphasizing that “the authorities in the area reserve the right to continue to act with the aim of planning for the benefit of the Palestinians in general, and the Bedouin sector in particular, in all of Judea and Samaria”. In early May 2014, the Civil Administration had not yet published its decision concerning the plan for relocation to the garbage dump. Given the developments detailed below, the plan appears to have been abandoned.

One structure built without permits in Bedouin communities is a primary school in Khan al-Ahmar. Established in June 2009, the building is made of mud and rubber tires. Before the school was opened, the village children had to go schools that were far distant, making trips that were both costly and risky. A month after the school opened, the Civil Administration issued it a demolition order, arguing that it was too close to a main road for which expansion plans have already been approved. Att. Shlomo Lecker filed a petition to the High Court of Justice on behalf of local Bedouins in the area, seeking that the demolition order be withdrawn. In September 2009, the settlements of Kfar Adumim, Alon and Nofei Prat petitioned the court together with Israeli organization Regavim that insists on , demanding implementation of the demolition orders issued for 257 Palestinian structures in their vicinity, including the school.

In response to the Bedouin residents’ petition, the Civil Administration agreed not to demolish the school before the end of the school year in June 2010, and declared that the plans to relocate the residents would include a new school. The Court therefore denied both petitions in March 2010. The school was not demolished at the end of the 2010 school year, nor the following year either. In August 2011, the settlements petitioned the High Court once more, seeking to have the military and the Civil Administration carry out the demolition orders for the school. In November 2011, the area’s Palestinian residents, represented by Att. Lecker, also re-petitioned the High Court, seeking that the demolition of the school be stayed pending completion of a master plan for a village community near Khan al-Ahmar’s current location, where the school could be rebuilt legally. In response to the petition by the settlements, the State announced in September 2012 that two alternative sites in the Jericho area – Nu’eimeh North and Armonot Hashmonaim – were being considered for relocation of the community of Khan al-Ahmar near Ma’ale Adumim, adding that the relocation would be carried out through a participatory process that would include representatives of the Jahalin, hopefully within a year. The State added that the demolition orders would not be carried out before the process was completed. In light of the State’s response, the Court chose not to intervene and rejected the petitions.

In November 2013, the settlements petitioned the High Court a third time, reiterating their demand that the State carry out the demolition orders. In response, the State cited “the plan in process to relocate residents to an area north of Jericho, as part of the ‘Ramat Nu’eimeh’ master plan”, and informed the Court that the master plan for the Armonot Hashmona’im area had been deferred for the time being. The residents of Khan al-Ahmar were determinedly opposed to relocation to the Nu’eimeh area, and submitted a plan outlining the necessary construction and planning adjustments necessary to validate their current site of residence. The plan was rejected by the authorities. State representatives requested that the Court reject the petition, emphasizing that “it is important to bear in mind that we are dealing with school-age children, and transferring them to another educational framework, far from their place of residence, is undesirable”, and that “extreme sensitivity is called for before carrying out the demolition orders, in light of the implications for the abovementioned minors”. In May 2014, the Court rejected the petition, noting “the Respondents’ efforts to reach an amenable overall solution and their wish to avoid harming minors”.

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Bedouins in strategic West Bank area fear eviction

Bedouins in strategic West Bank area fear eviction

This article originally appeared in SF Gate – May 8, 2014 [Photo by Majdi Mohammed, AP]

By Karin Laub

West Bank (AP) — Over the course of just three weeks, Israeli forces destroyed Suleiman Qaed’s small cinderblock house and the trailer home an aid group sent him as a replacement. Even the Red Cross tent his family now calls home appears at risk of being torn down, with Israeli officers taking pictures of it and warning him that it’s in an illegal location.

But Qaed, 54, fears far worse is in store — the dismantling of his entire Bedouin community called Jabal al-Baba. The hilltop encampment of shacks and sheep pens is located just east of Jerusalem in one of the most strategic areas of the West Bank. Its fate could help determine if setting up a Palestinian state next to Israel will soon no longer be possible.

Leaders of the area’s Jahalin tribe, rights activists and international aid officials believe the demolitions in Jabal al-Baba and eviction orders for another village are part of a push by Israel to relocate hundreds of Palestinian Bedouins and make way for Israeli settlements. Jabal al-Baba sits on land earmarked for a settlement for 20,000 Israelis, known as E-1.

“We fear it and we expect it,” said Qaed, a blind father of eight.

Israeli officials confirmed plans to relocate Bedouins but said discussions with the communities are continuing. The Bedouins would be concentrated in more urban settings, including a new town in the West Bank’s Jordan Valley.

There is precedent. Between 1997 and 2007, Israel evicted about 150 Jahalin families from their communities to make way for the expansion of the settlement of Maaleh Adumim, across a main highway from where E-1 would be built.

The Jahalin were resettled near Jerusalem’s municipal garbage dump, in an area rife with pests and packs of dogs. While they received compensation and land, they had to sell most of their herds for lack of grazing space.

“All our relatives in Jabal al-Baba and the other communities know our suffering,” saidMohammed Miqbel, a leader of the uprooted Jahalin. “They are fervently pleading not to be moved here.”

The United Nations and the European Union have been monitoring Israel’s plans with alarm.

Chris Gunness, a spokesman for a U.N. aid agency, said some 2,800 Bedouins are at risk of forced displacement.

The EU also has expressed concern and criticized Israel for dismantling three EU-funded trailer homes in Jabal al-Baba and issuing final demolition orders for an additional 18. In all, EU-funded aid agencies have distributed some 200 trailers, latrines and water tanks to Bedouin communities in the Jerusalem area.

John Gatt-Rutter, the local EU representative, said the issue of compensation was raised with Israeli officials.

Underlying the tensions are conflicting views of the rights of the Jahalin, who were displaced from the Negev Desert during the war over Israel’s 1948 creation and settled between Jerusalem and the Jordan Valley in the 1950s.

In 2012, U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon said Israel’s Bedouin plans “would amount to individual and mass forcible transfers” in violation of international law, even if some gave consent.

Israel largely views the Bedouins as squatters and says its relocation plan is meant to legalize their status and improve their quality of life. “In order to do that, we need to … move people from where they are living today and move them a few kilometers (miles),” said Maj. Guy Inbar, a Defense Ministry official.

Inbar said the preliminary plans call for Bedouins to be concentrated in three areas — the community next to the garbage dump and two new towns in the southern Jordan Valley. He declined to elaborate.

David Elhayani, leader of the Jordan Valley’s 7,000 Israeli settlers, said a plan shown to him by Israeli officials called for more than 1,400 construction plots near the village of Nuemeh. Elhayani said he objected, in part, because the town would be established in an area under the jurisdiction of his settlement council.

Israel is promoting the relocation plans at a time when hopes are fading for a U.S.-brokered peace deal with the Palestinians, who seek a state in the West Bank, Gaza and east Jerusalem, lands Israel captured in the 1967 war. The latest round of talks ended in late April, after nine months, and there’s little chance they will resume soon.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu says he will not partition Jerusalem and keep large chunks of the West Bank. Some 550,000 Israelis now live in lands captured in 1967.

Under Israeli plans dating back to the 1990s, the lands of Jabal al-Baba and neighboring areas are earmarked for E-1, a settlement with 3,500 apartments. Israel would also build a new loop of its West Bank separation barrier — seen by some in Israel as a possible future border — to bring E-1 and Maaleh Adumim on the “Israeli side.”

Israel froze the plans for years under pressure from the U.S., which feared E-1 and a barrier jutting deep into the West Bank would break up the territorial contiguity of a Palestinian state. E-1 in particular would prevent development in Arab areas of east Jerusalem, the Palestinians’ hoped-for capital, by cutting it off from the West Bank.

In 2012, Netanyahu announced he would move forward with planning for E-1 after the Palestinians won U.N. General Assembly recognition of a state of Palestine. Israel has said construction is years away, but even before the U.N. vote, officials set up a towering hilltop police station there as a first foothold.

Israeli government spokesman Mark Regev denied any connection between settlement plans and a possible relocation of Bedouins. “There is no such policy,” he said, adding that no decision has been taken to start building in E-1.

But Bedouins are nervous as pressure by Israeli authorities mounts. In March, Qaed’s house was razed because he didn’t have a building permit. In April, Israeli forces destroyed six more structures and dismantled three trailer homes, including Qaed’s.

“We feel there is a lot of pressure,” community leader Atallah Masara said. “It’s unacceptable for us to leave this land unless we are forced out.”

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Israel’s creative dispossession tactics

Israel’s creative dispossession tactics

This article originally appeared in Al Jazeera - May 3, 2014 [Photo by AFP/Getty Images]

By Nora Lester Murad

At first, the visit by the Israeli Civil Administration (ICA) to Jabal al-Baba on April 9 seemed routine. A Bedouin community in the E1 area, Jabal al-Baba has had 18 demolition orders pending since February. Residents were not surprised, then, when officials delivered stop-work orders on three more insulated residential structures. Under Israeli law, these structures can be demolished – but only after a 21-day delay, during which residents have the right to appeal to the Israeli courts.

But the Israeli authorities didn’t wait for the legal process to run its course; they returned to Jabal al-Baba and retrieved the stop-work orders they had distributed just hours before.

“We were happy,” said Suleiman Kayyed Jahalin, a member of the community. “We thought the Israelis had changed their minds and weren’t going to demolish our homes after all. We were wrong.”

A representative of an international NGO that delivers aid to the community described how the Israeli Civil Administration returned several hours later with soldiers and dismantled the three homes. Once dismantled, the ICA didn’t have to wait for their demolition orders to survive a legal challenge; they simply confiscated the parts of the houses under an Israeli law that entitles them to confiscate building materials, equipment or cars without any advance notice.

Although Israel dismantled and confiscated the homes rather than demolishing them, the result is the same: Human beings that lived in shelters are now homeless. A total of 111 additional members of the Ras al-Baba community live under impending threat of having their homes demolished. In fact, the United Nations reports that most of the 2,800 Bedouins residing in the E1 area have demolition orders against their homes (plus two schools). These Palestinian communities are considered among those most at risk of forced displacement.

‘Well-known concerns’

The three residential structures were constructed in February with funding from the European Commission Humanitarian and Civil Protection Department (ECHO) and the French consulate and were valued at approximately 2,000 euros ($2,770). Representatives from the donor agencies and other diplomatic staff toured the site on April 11, but the Office of the EU Representative was only willing to say, “The EU has well-known concerns about demolitions, which it has expressed on many occasions in line with our overall Area C policy. The EU will raise this issue with the relevant Israeli authorities.”

Palestinian human rights advocates are disappointed that European donors have failed to act boldly to hold Israel accountable. It seems that many humanitarian actors have bought into the notion that demolition of donor-funded projects is “sensitive” and should not be addressed head-on.

The United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) has tracked Israeli demolition of donor-funded projects since 2011. They report that 317 donor-funded projects were demolished between January 1, 2011 and the end of 2013.

In another recent incident, a truck with donations from the Italian government arrived at the school in the Bedouin community of Khan al-Ahmar on February 27. According to the principal: “A drone sailed around taking photographs and 20 minutes later, the Israeli Civil Administration showed up with three carloads of police and confiscated all our new playground equipment and construction materials.” They even took the truck in which the aid was delivered.

Some human rights advocates describe the confiscation of playground equipment as “silly” while others call it “evil”, but one thing is certain: Such confiscations are illegal. Diakonia, a Swedish faith-based development organisation that promotes respect for international humanitarian law, refers to the Fourth Geneva Convention when it concludes that international humanitarian law “…specifically protects against the requisition of property of relief organisations and prohibits the diversion of relief consignments from the purpose for which they are intended, except in cases of urgent necessity…”

The Italian consulate did not respond to a request for a statement.

What’s at stake

The stakes are financial, legal and moral. The confiscation and demolition of humanitarian aid may result in forcible transfer, which may be considered a grave breach of the Fourth Geneva convention.

International and Israeli NGOs have documented Israeli tactics, which include denial of building permits to structures where no master plan exists, refusal to respond to community-supported master plans submitted for approval, stop-work orders for construction lacking building permits, seizure or confiscation of equipment or materials, and demolition of structures. Palestinians are often charged a fee for the demolition of their home or offered the option to self-demolish in order to reduce their fines. Seizure, confiscation and demolition lead to displacement of Palestinians, especially in Area C, and facilitate Israel’s illegal settlement activities.

Thousands of Palestinians are effected by Israeli confiscations and the demolition of property, resulting in growing humanitarian concerns. However, with rare exceptions, most international donors are subdued in their criticism of Israeli demolitions in general and do not speak out publicly about the demolition of taxpayer-funded projects. To be fair, they are stuck between conflicting interests. On the one hand, international donors are legally-mandated by international humanitarian law to address the humanitarian needs of Palestinians in Area C, whether or not Israel approves. To ensure the sustainability of their humanitarian projects, they would have to obtain permits from Israel.

However, the Israeli planning and permit regime in Area C is illegal and it may also be illegal for donors to grant it validity by seeking Israeli permits. Moreover, donors who build without Israeli permits and see their funded projects demolished may expose themselves to criticism for spending taxpayers’ money irresponsibly.

Increasingly, local and international aid critics are saying that by failing to hold Israel accountable, donors alleviate pressure on Israel to agree to a sustainable and just peace and are therefore complicit in the ongoing denial of Palestinian rights. They also note the spike in demolitions of Palestinian property that coincided with the renewal of US-backed peace talks. Diplomats and officials are also starting to speak out, but so far, only off the record.

Nora Lester Murad is a writer of fiction and commentary living in Jerusalem. Her blog, “The View From My Window in Palestine” is at


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[Swedish Radio] Israel bygger bosättningar trots fredsförhandlingar

[Swedish Radio] Israel bygger bosättningar trots fredsförhandlingar

Photo by Katja Magnusson – Swedish Radio

The following is a Swedish Radio piece, on the recent demolition of EU-funded temporary structures on E-1 and subsequent discussions as to whether to call for compensation from Israel. 

Originally aired on Sveriges Radio - April 16, 2014

By Katja Magnusson

Enligt FN:s organ för palestinska flyktingar (UNRWA) har husrivningar och vräkningar av palestinier ökat medan förhandlingarna pågår.

Ekot har besökt en grupp beduiner som fått veta att deras hus ska rivas, trots att de bott på platsen i runt 50 år.

– Det här var duschen, men de förstörde den, säger Amina och visar en överbliven ho som ligger på marken, det enda som finns kvar av huset.

I slutet av förra veckan omringades kullen de bor på av israelisk militär, tre hus revs och rivningsorder delades ut för 18 andra byggnader. De hemlösa familjerna bor nu i tält.

De små containerliknande husen som demolerades har delvis betalats av EU, som uttryckt oro över det ökade antalet husrivningar på Västbanken. Israel motiverar ofta rivningarna med att byggnaderna saknar bygglov.

Kullen Jabal al-Baba där familjerna lever och där de har sina får är strategiskt viktig, här har Israel haft planer på att bygga ut bosättningen Maale Adumim sedan 1990-talet. Om det skulle bli av kommer Västbanken i praktiken att skäras av i två delar enligt kritiker.

FN uppskattar att cirka 2 800 palestinier riskerar att tvångsförflyttas i området. FN, EU och frivilligorganisationer bekräftar att situationen förvärrats under de snart nio månader som fredsförhandlingarna nu pågått.

– Det har kommit fler order om husrivningar, fler palestinier har förflyttats mot sin vilja och våldet ökar, säger Chris Gunness, talesperson för FN-organet för palestinska flyktingar, UNRWA.

Efter att det blev klart att palestinierna ansökt om medlemskap i internationella konventioner har situationen eskalerat, fortsätter Chris Gunness, som tror att det finns en tydlig koppling till det som händer i fredsprocessen.

De runt 300 palestinierna som bor på kullen Jabal al-Baba har svårt att tro på fredsförhandlingarna.

– Det blir ingen fred om de tar ditt hus från dig, säger Ghassan, som bor i ett tält efter att hans hus rivits.

Ekot har sökt de ansvariga för rivningarna utan resultat.

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