Thursday, November 27, 2008

Zionist settlers refuse to evacuate Palestinian Home


Related News Item:
The Situation in Hebron Following the Evacuation Order from the Israeli High Court
Source: The Alternative Information Center (AIC)
Thursday, 27 November 2008

Tensions in Hebron have grown significantly since elapse of the 16 November Israeli High Court deadline for evacuation of Jewish settlers from the al-Rajabi family home in the city.

Last week, clashes between settlers and Israeli police and soldiers occurred after the date for the evacuation expired. According to Israeli military, however, a decision was made to delay the evacuation due to fear of an increase in violent clashes with the settlers.

On 18 November, the day following the clashes, Defense Minister Ehud Barak instructed the Israeli police and military to submit a plan for evacuation in the coming days. Earlier Barak stress, that if the settlers would not vacate voluntary, then the state would have to use force.

In response to this, over this weekend, more than a thousand Jews arrived to Hebron to celebrate a Jewish festival commemorating the death of the biblical matriarch, Sarah. After this celebration, a few hundred right-wing extremists remained in Hebron to prepare for what they foresee as a coming “nasty struggle with Israeli security forces.” Their purpose is to prevent the Israeli military from evacuating the families now living illegally in the al-Rajabi family house.

In solidarity with the Hebron settlers, forty-nine Israeli parliamentarians demanded on Monday, 24 November, that the Israeli military refrain from evacuation, until after the upcoming national elections in Israel, scheduled for February of next year.

On Tuesday, 25 November, right-wing activists planned a march from Jerusalem to Hebron in order to demonstrate solidarity and help those fighting the evacuation. The plan was to arrive in Hebron Wednesday and on the way to attract more supports to join the march. In Hebron they will remain until the security forces arrive to evacuate them.

On the evening of 25 November, approximately forty teenage settlers rampaged through Palestinian neighborhoods of Hebron, slashing car tires, smashing windows and painting the star of David on walls. None of the settlers were arrested.

Moreover, Prime Minister Ehud Olmert announced on 25 November that his government will not evacuate the settlers with force. Instead they will try to prevent that the settlers from attacking their Palestinian neighbors.

While Israeli politicians are trying to find a solution for this situation and the Israeli police and military are attempting to avoid violent clashes with extremist settlers, the situation in Hebron is getting increasingly out of control. The price of Palestinians property being damaged and vandalized is ever increasing, and the settlers’ presence in the house is becoming larger and stronger. And all the while, the Israeli High Court’s decision to evacuate the Israeli settlers from the al-Rajabi family home is becoming more and more irrelvant.

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