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Bedouin village destroyed along West Bank

By Allen Cone
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Bedouin village destroyed along West Bank
Bedouin children stand near the remains of a house demolished by Israeli forces in the Abu Nuwar village, West Bank, on Wednesday, near the Israeli settlement Ma'ale Adumim. Photo by Debbie Hill/UPI | License Photo

July 4 (UPI) -- Israeli authorities on Wednesday demolished nine houses and three other structures used for agricultural purposes at the Bedouin village of Abu Nawwar near the West Bank settlement of Ma'ale Adumim.

In Abu Nawwar, the B'Tselem rights group told the Times of Israel that 62 people, half of them minors, were left homeless. Israeli authorities demolished a school in the community in February, saying it had been illegally built.

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The community is home to 687 Palestinians, with 65 percent children, Daoud Jahaleen, a spokesperson for the community, told Anadolu Agency.

Also Wednesday, residents of the Bedouin village in Khan al-Ahmar clashed with Israeli police during a protest against the evictions and impending demolition. Police said in a statement that 11 people were arrested during disturbances at the site, some for throwing rocks at officers.

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Residents of Khan al-Ahmar and protesters attempted to block construction equipment from advancing as it was moved into the area to pave an access road for the demolition. Some climbed onto a bulldozer.

On Tuesday night, Israel's Civil Administration hung notices around Khan al-Ahmar, warning they will be evicted. No timeline was given.

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Bedouin men from the Jahalain tribe sit in a tent at the entrance to the Al Khan al-Ahmar village in the West Bank, which is facing immediate demolition by Israel. Photo by Debbie Hill/UPI
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Israeli officials said the homes were built without permits. Israel wants to expand the settlement of Kfar Adumim.

Officials plan to move the residents to Al Jabel, a village near the Abu Dis garbage dump.

Several dozen families from the Bedouin clan of Jahalin moved to the village after their expulsion from the Negev in the 1950s. Homes were built on state-owned land.

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On May 24, three Supreme Court justices, Noam Sohlberg, Anat Baron and Yael Willner, allowed the state to demolish the homes.

Around 7,000 people from 46 Bedouin communities live in the area.

"We are concerned about all of them," Liz Throssell, a spokeswomen for the Office of the United Nations Commissioner for Human Rights, said in an U.N. release Tuesday.

She said "people would lose their homes, children would lose their schools" and residents "would lose their community."

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International humanitarian law prohibits the forced transfer of the population of an occupied territory, regardless of the motive, she noted.

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