Thursday, September 6, 2012

Photo essay: Palestinians displaced as Israel steps up West Bank demolitions

The last week of August saw a sharp increase in home and property demolitions by Israeli authorities after a relatively calm period during Ramadan. Now large-scale operations are forcing the displacement of many Palestinians, particularly targeting isolated communities in the South Hebron Hills.

On August 28, 2012, an Israeli judge absolved the Israeli state of its responsibility for the killing of U.S. activist Rachel Corrie, crushed to death by an Israeli military bulldozer while she was protesting house demolitions in Gaza. On the same day as the court decision, Palestinian inhabitants of Um Fagarah, together with other activists, organized a demonstration demanding justice for Rachel Corrie and protesting house demolitions. The demonstration took place just a few kilometers of the village of Susya, which saw three tents (two animal shelters, and one tent for sitting) demolished in the early hours of the same morning.

Two of the tents which were demolished had been donated earlier by international aid agencies following previous demolitions targeting the same family. The whole village of Susya is at risk of being demolished as most structures of the village have demolition orders.

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