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5 homeless as Israel demolishes Palestinian home, seizes water pumps

Israeli forces seized three water pumps yesterday from the town of Beit Ummar, a village north of Hebron in the southern occupied West Bank, reported Wafa news agency.

Activist Mohammad Awad, told Wafa that Israeli forces, accompanied by intelligence officers, raided an area to the north of the Beit Ummar town, and seized three water pumps owned by local resident Nabil Breigheth, which he uses for irrigation and planting purposes.

In addition, the soldiers summond Breigheth to appear before the Israeli Intelligence at the Gush Etzion detention centre.

Also yesterday, occupation forces demolished a residential house made of bricks and a water well in the village of Farasin, located west of Jenin.

Like hundreds of other Palestinian towns and villages in the West Bank, Farasin is located in ‘Area C’ under the Oslo Accords, putting it under the full Israeli military and administrative control.

Mahmoud Amarneh, head of Farasin village council, told Wafa that the Israeli forces demolished a water well and a 70-square-metre brick house displacing local resident Fayez Amarneh and his family of five.

He said the military warned the residents that the demolition will be executed following the raid last month, during which the soldiers issued 36 demolition orders for buildings and ancient water wells.

The small hamlet consists mostly of tents and tiny homes made out of cement and tin sheets, scattered across a vast area of more than 6,800 dunams (1,690 acres) of land.

It’s home to around 200 people, mostly shepherds and farmers, a quarter of whom are children under the age of 18.

Israel’s widely practiced policies of home demolitions targeting entire families are acts of illegal collective punishment and come in direct violation of International Human Rights Law.

Amarneh reiterated that the Israeli occupation government wants to take over the village in order to expand nearby illegal settlements.

Most of the international community considers Israeli settlements in the West Bank to be illegal.