Clashes broke out between Israeli police and local youth in the Bedouin village of Bir Hadaj in Israel’s Negev desert yesterday, after Israeli police affixed demolition orders on some villagers’ homes.
Locals told Ma’an that Israeli forces detained a number of people during the clashes, and that some Bir Hadaj residents were injured in the process.
They added that Israeli police issued demolition notices for homes belonging to the Abu Murayhil family ordering that the houses be demolished within 24 hours.
Locals said these houses had been demolished by Israeli authorities two weeks ago and had been recently rebuilt with the help of the Higher Guidance Committee of Arab Residents in the Negev.
“Israel thinks that it will find a solution by using force,” Bir Hadaj local committee head Salama Abu Idesan said. “It is not accustomed to negotiate with citizens, but we confirm that we are willing to have a dialogue and will not leave our land.”
Israeli police spokeswoman Luba Al-Samri said in a statement yesterday that “a group of masked youth driving tractors threw rocks at Isr
aeli forces and set tyres on fire” when police came to issue the demolition notices.
Al-Samri added that Israeli forces then deployed “heavily” in the area and detained a number of youth suspected of carrying out these “extremely dangerous acts”.
Bir Hadaj is one of 35 Bedouin villages considered “unrecognised” by the Israeli state. According to ACRI, more than half of the approximately 160,000 Negev Bedouins reside in unrecognised villages.