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Palestinian homes, roofs fired on as Israel army holds military drill

Israeli soldiers take part in a military drill in the Israeli-annexed Golan Heights on September 1, 2020 [JALAA MAREY/AFP via Getty Images]
Israeli soldiers take part in a military drill in the Israeli-annexed Golan Heights on September 1, 2020 [JALAA MAREY/AFP via Getty Images]

The Israeli army conducted military drills with live ammunition among Palestinian homes today in the village of Khallat Al-Dabaa in Masafer Yatta, reported Wafa news agency.

According to Fouad Al-Imour, a local activist, the exercises took place in an area where Palestinians live and resulted in at least four homes being struck and damaged.

He told Wafa: "The roofs of homes were destroyed and the villagers, mainly women and children, were frightened and in panic."

It comes after another exercise took place in the area last week, a move intended to force Palestinians living there to leave the area.

The Israeli occupation army is trying to force Palestinians out of at least 12 Masafer Yatta communities, claiming that their homes were built in the vicinity of a military training zone.

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On 4 May, the Israeli High Court of Justice approved the eviction of Palestinians living in Masafer Yatta to make room for Israeli military training.

About 1,200 people, including 580 children, are now at imminent risk of forced eviction and displacement, the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) said.

They stand to lose their homes, belongings, access to water, livelihoods, primary health facilities and schools, UN OCHA added, stating: "This could amount to forcible transfer, a grave breach of international humanitarian law and, thus, a war crime."

According to UN statistics, Israel has demolished or expropriated 217 Palestinian buildings in Masafer Yatta since 2011, leading to the displacement of 608 Palestinians.

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