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Israel evicts Palestinians from West Bank homes for 'military exercise'

An Israeli soldier directs an armored vehicle as Israeli soldiers set a temporary roller bridge during an exercise at the Jordan river, on October 20, 2010 near Gonen, Israel. [Uriel Sinai/Getty Images]
An Israeli soldier directs an armored vehicle as Israeli soldiers set a temporary roller bridge during an exercise at the Jordan river, on October 20, 2010 near Gonen, Israel. [Uriel Sinai/Getty Images]

Israeli forces, on Tuesday, evicted seven Palestinian families from their homes in the West Bank area of Al-Aghwar, citing "military exercises", according to a local Palestinian official, and reported by Anadolu News Agency.

The Israeli army says it will use the area to conduct a military training as of Tuesday morning.

"The army started military exercises in a number of areas in Al-Aghwar, with the participation of tanks and armoured vehicles," Moataz Bisharat, a local official responsible for monitoring Israeli settlement building in Tubas and Al-Aghwar, told Anadolu Agency.

Bisharat accused the Israeli army "of intentionally carrying out its training in the area in order to destroy Palestinian farmlands and force them to leave for building settlements".

There was no comment from the Israeli military on the accusation.

Some 65,000 Palestinians live in Al-Aghwar area in 34 communities, while around 13,000 Israeli settlers live in settlements there.

International law regards both the West Bank and East Jerusalem as occupied territories and considers all Jewish settlement-building activity there illegal.

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