Israeli forces today destroyed and blocked all roads linking the villages of the Masafer Yatta area, south of the occupied West Bank city of Hebron (Al-Khalil), according to the Palestinian news agency WAFA.
Coordinator of the Anti-Wall and Settlement Committees, Rateb al-Jabour, said that Israeli forces used a bulldozer to level and close the agricultural and main roads that connect Khallet Ad-Dabi‘ and Shi‘b al-Butum communities with the other hamlets.
No water or roads to Palestinians:
Israel "demolishes the roads in Masafer Yatta, [and] cut off key sections of the water supply that is routed to the 12 of the most & impoverished isolated Palestinian villages in the West Bank." via @Shepherds4Good pic.twitter.com/GlkSJTffFI
— Refaat🇵🇸 (@itranslate123) June 23, 2021
Al-Jabour added that the move is intended to further tighten restrictions on the villagers’ movement and force them out of their lands in favor of colonial settlement expansion in the southern Hebron hills.
Meanwhile, the Alliance for Human Rights, a group of activists that documents human rights abuses in Palestine, said that since the early morning, Israeli forces used a big military bulldozer to block and demolish several agricultural and main roads connecting more than 17 villages in Masafer Yatta, and cut off the water network to these villages.
Israeli forces raze, close roads in Masafer Yatta https://t.co/yqWLxa2f0L
— Joe Catron #DontRankYangOrAdams (@jncatron) June 23, 2021
“The situation is more than difficult in these areas without having the roads blocked. And imagine what the situation will be after this barbarian behavior by the occupation forces. Thousands of people lost their access to other places and they will be living in harsh conditions after today,” added the group in a press statement.
Masafer Yatta is a collection of almost 19 hamlets that rely heavily on animal husbandry as the main source of livelihood.
Located in Area C of the West Bank, under full Israeli administrative and military control, the area has been subjected to repeated Israeli violations by settlers and soldiers targeting their main source of living – livestock.
Sealed Off and Forgotten: What You Should Know about Israel’s ‘Firing Zones’ in the West Bank | Opinion by: Ramzy Baroud https://t.co/4MPdWvdML0
— Middle East Monitor (@MiddleEastMnt) January 14, 2020
It has been designated as a closed Israeli military zone for training since the 1980s and accordingly referred to as Firing Zone 918.
Israeli violations against the area include demolition of animal barns, homes and residential structures. Issuance of construction permits by Israel to local Palestinians in the area is non-existent.
(WAFA, PC, Social Media)