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UN: Israel's demolition of Palestinian homes in Humsa 'raises a real risk of forcible transfer'

Israeli army demolishes nearly 40 tents and structures of Palestinians in Himsa al-Bakia, in an area east of the Palestinian village of Tubas, in the occupied West Bank, on 1 February 2021. [Nedal Eshtayah - Anadolu Agency]
Israeli army demolishes nearly 40 tents and structures of Palestinians in Himsa al-Bakia, in an area east of the Palestinian village of Tubas, in the occupied West Bank, on 1 February 2021. [Nedal Eshtayah - Anadolu Agency]

Humanitarian Coordinator for the Occupied Palestinian Territory, Lynn Hastings, said yesterday that Israel's demolition of Palestinian homes in Humsa "raises a real risk of forcible transfer."

In a statement, Hastings said: "I visited the community of Humsa – Al Baqai'a which is situated some hundreds of metres into a firing zone in the Northern West Bank… The homes and belongings of the families living there were demolished or confiscated five times by the Israeli authorities since the beginning of February."

He added: "Tents, food, water tanks and fodder for their livestock have all been confiscated despite repeated calls by the international community for these actions to stop in accordance with international law."

Hastings continued: "As we have noted previously, situations where communities are put under pressure to move raises a real risk of forcible transfer."

The UN official stressed that the Israeli occupation authorities "should immediately halt all further demolitions of Palestinian homes and possessions, allow the humanitarian community to provide shelter, food and water to this most vulnerable group and these people to remain in their homes."

He stated that his call came in accordance with international law.

Early this week, a UN flash update said that the community of Humsa "remains largely unprotected and the response limited."

READ: Israel demolishes home of chief guard of Al-Aqsa Mosque

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