Days of Palestine

Wednesday, February 1

Israeli occupation demolishes Palestinian Bedouin village for 119th time

Days of Palestine -

Israeli occupation forces demolished Palestinian Bedouin village of Al-Araqib in Al-Naqab on Tuesday for 119th time since 2010.

Aziz al-Turi, a local activist said that the Israeli bulldozers accompanied by Israeli police forces raided the village and demolished its makeshift homes "without any consideration for their residents, and despite of the bad weather conditions.”

“The [Israeli occupation] police is always trying to provoke us … The demolitions will not frighten us and will not deter us from rebuilding our homes,” he said.

An Israeli court ruled last month that six residents of Al-Araqib must pay NIS262,000 ($72,000) for previous demolition costs, in addition to NIS100,000 ($27,693) to cover the costs of the state’s lawyer.

It was only the latest payment in which the village has had to compensate Israel for its routine demolitions in the village.

According to Al-Araqib residents, before the latest court ruling, the village was ordered to pay more than two million shekels (approximately $541,000) for the cumulative cost of Israeli-enforced demolitions carried out against the village since 2010.

The village is one of 35 Bedouin villages considered “unrecognised” by the Israeli occupation state. According to the Association for Civil Rights in Israel (ACRI), more than half of the approximately 160,000 Bedouins in Al-Naqab reside in unrecognised villages.

Such unrecognised Bedouin villages were established in Al-Naqab soon after the 1948 Jewish massacred committed by Jewish Zionists against the Palestinians and creating the occupation nstate of Israel.

Many of the Bedouins were forcibly transferred to the village sites during the 17-year period when Palestinians inside Israel were governed under Israeli military law, which ended shortly before Israel's military takeover of Gaza and the West Bank, including East Jerusalem, in 1967.

Now more than 60 years later, the villages have yet to be recognised by Israel and live under constant threats of demolition and forcible removal.

Right groups say that the demolition of unrecognised Bedouin villages is a central Israeli policy aimed at removing the indigenous Palestinian population from Al-Naqab and transferring them to government-zoned townships to make room for the expansion of Jewish Israeli communities.