The Israeli occupation yesterday demolished the historic Palestinian village of Al-Araqeeb in the Negev for the 111th time since July 2010, Quds Press reported.
Al-Araqib is unrecognised by the Israeli occupation authorities although it existed before the Israeli occupation began in 1948.
Like other villages, Israel demolishes it under the pretext of a lack of building licenses and building on “state-owned land”.
The village chief, Abu Sayyah Al-Araqib, said:
A large number of the Israeli police forces and demolition units raided the village in the afternoon and started to demolish the tents and camps where the villagers are living.
He noted that the villagers have been living in tents since after Israel demolished their cement houses. He expressed his anger over the displacement of the villagers despite the cold weather.
Speaking to Quds Press, Abu Sayyah stressed that the villagers would rebuild their village again and again. He reiterated that “the fall of Al-Araqeeb would be the fall for all Arabs in the Negev.”
Al-Araqeeb is one of 51 Arab villages in the Negev the Israeli occupation authorities do not recognise and has been targeted for demolition ahead of building homes for new Jewish communities.
- is being charge Bedouins in Al-Araqeeb are being ordered to pay for the Israeli-enforced demolitions of the village since 2010
Israel has imposed fines on the villagers of Al-Araqib worth millions of dollars, Quds Press said, and charges them for the use of the Israeli bulldozers which carry out the demolition of their homes.
Israeli courts decide that the owners of the unlicensed homes must demolish them, but when they fail to do so, Israeli bulldozers carry out the demolitions and the owners are ordered to pay for the bulldozers.
In 1969, Israel called on Arab land owners to register their land with the authorities, but since then they have not accepted any of the applications made by Arab residents of the Negev.
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