UN, European states call on Israel to halt demolitions

UN, European states call on Israel to halt demolitions

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United Nations: The United Nations Security Council and the European Security Council called on Israel on Friday to stop the demolition of Bedouin settlements in the Jordan Valley and give humanitarian permission to enter the community in Husa Bakaya.

Estonia, France, Ireland, Norway and the United Kingdom stated in a joint statement issued at the end of the monthly meeting of the Security Council on the Middle East conflict that they “repeatedly dismantled and confiscated recently, including the establishment of Humsa Al-Bqaia in the Jordan Valley Institutions funded by the European Union and donors.”

It said the concern was also focused on the 70 people or so living in the Bedouin community, including 41 children.

“We reiterate our call on Israel to halt demolitions and confiscations,” the statement said. “We further call on Israel to allow full, sustained and unimpeded humanitarian access to the community in Humsa Al-Baqaia.”

Humsah al-Baqia sits in the Jordan Valley, a fertile and strategic patch of land that runs from Lake Tiberias to the Dead Sea, which has emerged as a flashpoint in the struggle over the West Bank.

It is in the so-called Area C of the West Bank, the occupied Palestinian territories, where Israel is still under its full military control.

According to Israeli military law, Palestinians cannot build buildings in the area without permission, and they are usually rejected and demolitions are common.

The UN envoy for the region, Norwegian Tor Wennesland, also voiced his concerns over the demolitions and land confiscations.

He said Israel security forces had “demolished or confiscated 80 structures” in the Bedouin community “in an Israeli declared firing zone in the Jordan Valley.”

He said that the actions had “displaced 63 people, including 36 children multiple times, and followed a similar demolition in November 2020.”

“I urge Israel to cease the demolition and seizure of Palestinian property throughout the occupied West Bank, including East Jerusalem, and to allow Palestinians to develop their communities,” he said.

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