Israeli occupation forces and officials visited the Palestinian community of Khan Al-Ahmar in the central West Bank yesterday in preparation for the expulsion of the village’s residents.
In a press release, Israeli human rights group B’Tselem said that Israeli occupation personnel “walked through Khan Al-Ahmar, among the residents’ homes, in what appeared to be preparations for the planned demolition of the community”.
An Israeli official confirmed to Haaretz that the “measurement-taking” had taken place, while a village resident told the paper that the Israeli occupation forces “walked around the houses, entered the ecological school (the well-known one made of tyres, which is also slated for demolition), and counted the flocks of sheep. He said the children who were in the school fled in panic”.
We are afraid to sleep, in case they come at night and destroy our homes, and we are afraid when we wake up, in case they come then to destroy them
According to B’Tselem, “residents reported that a police officer told them they would be forcibly removed and that they would be better off if they left ‘voluntarily’”. The police officer apparently “declined to name the date of the transfer”.
As recounted by the NGO, on 24 May, the Israeli Supreme Court “ruled that the state may demolish the homes of the community of Khan Al-Ahmar and transfer the residents from their homes”.
“This ruling removes the last impediment which had thus far served to defer the transfer of the community, a war crime under international law,” B’Tselem added.