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Israel court delays eviction of Khan Al-Ahmar by 6 month

September 29, 2021 at 2:27 pm

Israeli occupation forces storm the Bedouin village of Khan Al-Ahmar in the West Bank on 14 September 2018 [İssam Rimawi/Anadolu Agency]

Israel’s High Court today approved the government’s request to postpone the planned demolition and eviction of the Palestinian residents of the occupied West Bank village of Khan Al-Ahmar by six months.

Walid Assaf, head of the Wall and Settlement Affairs Commission, explained that the High Court’s decision comes in light of the continued pressure from the international community and the International Criminal Court’s (ICC) warning that the eviction and displacement of the residents amounts to a war crime.

He told Wafa news agency: “The occupation authorities tried to force the residents of Khan al-Ahmar to leave, but they failed because of the resident’s legendary steadfastness. Also because of the ICC, which warned the Israeli government against displacing or demolishing the village and the surrounding communities in the area known as E1, considering such an act a war crime, in addition to the diplomatic effort and the strong international position in support of the Palestinians staying on their lands.”

The order to raze the village was first issued in 2009, over ten years ago.

With their position in the so-called E1 area, where an Israeli settlement expansion project is planned along the Jerusalem-Jericho road, Palestinian communities in Khan Al-Ahmar have battled for their existence for decades.

READ: Israel seeks court extension before submitting plan to evict Khan Al-Ahmar

“Since two years ago, there is nothing new under the sun,” stated the Israeli judges today, stressing that the government had been given the opportunity time and again to carry out the evacuation but that nothing had changed.

According to the Jerusalem Post, Judge Noam Sohlberg said: “There is no doubt that the day is nearing when we will no longer be able to come to terms with the non-clarification of the petition, and will require a clear decision, for better or for worse. We cannot sit idly by, without action, in front of the state dragging its feet.”

Israeli occupation forces maintain that the homes must be demolished because they were built without the almost impossible to attain building permits. Meanwhile, the nearby illegal Israeli settlement of Ma’ale Adumim has been growing since 1975, it is now home to more than 37,000 illegal Israeli settlers.