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Israel raids Palestinian protest village

Jan. 17, 2013 at 9:17 AM
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BETHLEHEM, Israel, Jan. 17 (UPI) -- Police said Israeli forces following a high court ruling tore down tents that Palestinians had erected in the E1 area of the West Bank.

Activist Ali Abedat told the Palestinian Ma'an news agency that Israeli forces arrived with bulldozers, sealed entrances to the village with cement blocks and cleared the area overnight Wednesday.

The tents, which were put up as part of a Palestinian protest by a new village council, the Bab-al-Shams, had remained standing in accordance with an Israeli court order while judges considered a Palestinian claim of ownership of the land.

The Israeli Supreme Court approved the removal of the tents Wednesday, agreeing with the government's argument that the village could be a magnet for violent Palestinian protests.

The Bab al-Shams who lived in the village, said their display was a non-violent implementation of Palestinian rights.

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