Days of Palestine

Tuesday, June 6

UK official condemns Israeli plans to evict Palestinians from Masafer Yatta

UK Minister of State for Asia and the Middle East, Amanda Milling, getting a briefing on the E1 settlement on the outskirts of occupied East Jerusalem.
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During a visit on Friday to Masafer Yatta communities in the South Hebron Hills in the occupied West Bank, Amanda Milling, British Minister of State for Asia and the Middle East, stressed that the United Kingdom is strongly opposed to Israeli plans to evict Palestinians from their homes.

Milling said in a video that she met families that face the threat of demolition and eviction from their homes.

“I met families and children living here and it was really difficult to hear about the challenges they face including settler violence and living in constant fear of eviction and demolitions,” she said, adding, “The people I met today want to stay in their homes and they should be able to do so.”

Milling stressed that the UK strongly opposes such evictions “which cause unnecessary suffering.”

She said that “these evictions are against international law in all but the most exceptional circumstances.”

The UK official said that she raised this issue with the Israeli deputy minister of foreign affairs.

On May 4, the Israeli High Court gave the Israeli army the green light to demolish and displace over 1000 Palestinians living in some eight communities in Masafer Yatta in order to turn the area into a training and a firing zone.

The decision promoted strong local and international condemnation and warning of serious consequences if carried out.

The Israeli occupation has been gradually demolishing homes and displacing families in several Masafer Yatta communities over the past few weeks.

Milling arrived in the occupied territories on Thursday on a two-day visit and her first stop was a briefing on settlement expansion in East Jerusalem.

“Heard how the E1 settlement plan would seriously hinder a two state solution and prospects of peace. UK urges Israeli Government to end settlement expansion,” she said after visiting the E1 settlement site, east of Jerusalem.

The UK official also met with Palestinian Prime Minister Mohammad Shtayyeh and other officials during her visit.