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Israel demolishes Al-Araqeeb for 129th time

The aftermath of Israeli bulldozers razing Al-Araqeeb village in Negev [Sarah Stern‏/Twitter]
Israeli bulldozers canbe seen after demolishing the Arab Bedouin village of Al-Araqeeb [Sarah Stern‏/Twitter]

Israeli authorities demolished the Arab village of Al-Araqeeb in the Negev area for the 129th time today.

Aziz Al-Turi, member of the local Committee for the Defence of Al-Araqeeb, said that Israeli forces “arrived in the early hours of the morning and destroyed the village for the 129th time.”

“Although we are in Ramadan and despite the high temperatures, the Israeli authorities have insisted that their inhumanity be shown,” he told the Anadolu Ageny.

 

We have begun to rebuild the village again, and if they return and demolish it, we will rebuild it and we will not leave whatever they did.

 

Houses in Al-Araqeeb are built of wood, plastic and tin, and are inhabited by 22 families, according to the Anadolu correspondent.

The Israeli authorities demolished the village for the first time in July 2010 and have since demolished it every time residents rebuild it.

The Israeli government does not recognise the village of al-‘Araqib, but its residents – tens of them – insist on staying on their land despite repeated demolitions.

Al-Araqeb is one of 35 “unrecognised” Bedouin villages. According to the Association for Civil Rights in Israel (ACRI), more than half of the approximately 160,000 Bedouins in the Negev reside in unrecognised villages.

The unrecognised Bedouin villages were established in the Negev soon after the 1948 Arab-Israeli war following the creation of the State of Israel.

Right groups say that the demolition of unrecognised Bedouin villages is a central Israeli policy aimed at removing the indigenous Palestinian population from the Negev and transferring them to government-zoned townships to make room for the expansion of Jewish Israeli communities.

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