Above Photo: AFP PHOTO/JAAFAR ASHTIYEHJAAFAR ASHTIYEH/AFP/Getty Images
On Wednesday, Israeli forces carried out a mass demolition in four areas of the occupied West Bank’s Jordan Valley — Jiftlik, Fasayil al-Wusta, Ein Kurzliya and al-Mkassar.
Seven homes and six animal shelters were destroyed, leaving 71 people without a roof over their heads.
For families in Fasayil al-Wusta and Ein Kurzliya, it was the fourth demolition in recent years. In al-Mkassar, Israeli forces demolished a tent provided to the family after their dwelling was demolished a week before.
The only access road to Ein Kurzliya was blocked and in Jiftlik, a system of pipes providing water to 300 people was deliberately damaged.
The next day, Israeli forces razed dozens more homes and structures in the Tubas area of the Jordan Valley.
More than 80 homes and livelihood-related structures in seven communities — all but one in the Jordan Valley — were destroyed this week, according to the United Nations monitoring group OCHA.
The Jordan Valley demolitions come one week after Israel destroyed 40 homes in the West Bank’s South Hebron Hills — the largest such demolition in a decade.
“The Jordan Valley and the northern Dead Sea make up approximately 30 percent of the West Bank and are the most significant Palestinian land reserves,” according to the human rights group B’Tselem.
“Since 1967, Israel has pursued various measures to annex this territory de facto. It has prevented the development of Palestinian communities, systematically destroyed homes in Palestinian Bedouin communities, denied access to water and strictly limited Palestinians’ freedom of movement. At the same time, Israel has exploited the resources of the area for its own needs and has allocated generous tracts of land and water resources to Israeli settlements,” the group adds.
Video, editing and reporting by Keren Manor and Oren Ziv of Activestills. Text by The Electronic Intifada.