Israel evicts home invaders in Hebron as Netanyahu backs settlements
Published Wednesday, April 4, 2012
Israeli forces on Wednesday began evicting a group of settlers from a Palestinian home in the West Bank city of Hebron, as the Israeli prime minister sought backing for three other illegal settlements in the area.
"The security forces are evacuating the house at this moment," said police spokesman Micky Rosenfeld.
"Israeli police officers, border police and the IDF coordinated an operation and that is under way now," he told AFP, saying the evictions began "after the government decision was made."
Six families of Jewish settlers invaded the property a week ago, claiming they had purchased one floor of the building from its Palestinian owners, a charge denied by Palestinian police.
The Israeli defense ministry also said they did not have the necessary permits and on Monday ordered them to leave the premises within 24 hours.
One of the settlers inside the house also confirmed that they were being evicted.
All Israeli settlements on Palestinian land are illegal in international law, but Israel continues to approve the building of new communities.
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Wednesday said his government would back three settler outposts established illegally in the West Bank.
"It is my intention to bring to the government in the near future a recommendation from the defense minister, and the necessary permissions, for regulating the status of the communities of Bruchin, Sansana and Rechelim," he said.
Netanyahu said he would also seek a way to avoid the demolition of a fourth outpost, Ulpana.
Footage emerged on Tuesday of Israeli forces violently attacking a protest against settlements in Hebron.
Activists had taken over a house owned by the Hebron municipality to protest Israel's continued abuses of international law and human rights.
Israeli security forces invaded and attacked the peaceful protesters with batons.
During the eviction, the force employed the use of tear-gas and dozens of activists were assaulted, with at least five being taken to hospital, a statement from the "Youth Against Settlements" group said.
(Al-Akhbar, AFP, Electronic Intifada)