Here is an outrage that should be in everyone’s thoughts today. Israel has served a demolition order on a Bedouin village in the Negev in order to remove the 1000 Bedouin occupants of the village and make way for a Jewish settlement with a Hebraicized version of the village’s Arab name.
Demolition was to take place today. But international outcry appears to have halted it, for a day anyway. From Adalah’s Facebook page:
The large presence of journalists, Arab parliamentarians, and community leaders and activists that gathered in Atir-Umm al-Hiran, as well as the vigilance of supporters and allies around the world, appears to have deterred the Israeli authorities from carrying out their plans this morning to demolish several homes in the village.
The demolition remains imminent, however. According to the court order, the state has until November 30 to carry out the demolition. We will keep you updated.
The community and their supporters remain steadfast. Adalah will continue to represent and stand with the villagers in their just struggle to remain in their homes and on their land.
Here is video of families preparing for demolition. This is not the West Bank, it’s Israel. As if the policy of Judaizing the land differs on one side or the other of the Green Line.
The report on the government’s decision, from +972’s Edo Konrad:
The Israel Land Authority (ILA) announced on Monday that the demolition of Umm al-Hiran, an unrecognized Bedouin village in southern Israel, would begin the next day, following a 13-year legal struggle. The state plans to build a Jewish town atop the remains of the Bedouin village.
Following the announcement, Adalah – The Legal Center for Arab Minority Rights in Israel filed a last-minute request with the Be’er Sheva Magistrate’s Court to freeze the demolition process, which was rejected
Adalah reported yesterday on this dispossession “for strictly racial reasons”:
The Israel Land Authority (ILA) has notified Israel’s Execution and Collection Authority (ECA) that the demolition of the Arab Bedouin village of Atir-Umm al-Hiran is slated to begin tomorrow, Tuesday, 22 November 2016.
In response to a request filed by Adalah – The Legal Center for Arab Minority Rights in Israel seeking to freeze the demolition process, the ILA’s legal representative responded, “the evacuation is set for 22 November 2016, this coming Tuesday.”
In 2015, after a 13-year legal battle, the Israeli Supreme Court decided by a 2-1 majority to authorize the state’s plan to demolish Atir-Umm al-Hiran and forcibly displace its approximately 1,000 residents for the sole purpose of establishing a new Jewish town named “Hiran” over its ruins. Earlier this year, the Court rejected Adalah’s request to re-consider this judgment and to hold a second hearing on the case.
The case of Atir-Umm al-Hiran is a clear example of dispossession and displacement for strictly racial reasons;the only reason the village is being demolished is to allow the state to establish of a new Jewish town with accompanying range of land.
Here is video we made in al-Hiran three years ago, of a village elder, Hajj al-Ahmed, responding to the Israeli claim that Israel made the desert bloom.