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Jericho: IOF destroys Palestinian home

West Bank (The Inside Palestine)- Israeli forces demolished a Palestinian home in Jericho, in the occupied West Bank on Monday, local residents told The New Arab.

The house was located just outside the Aqbat Jaber refugee camp, south of Jericho. It belonged to the Karshan family and was unfinished.

“I had been building that house for five years, saving shekel upon shekel to finish it. Now I lost it all,” Ali Karshan, owner of the house, told The New Arab.

“I work on date farms for 70 shekels per day and I have five children, including a disabled boy, and I live in a tent,” said Karshan.

“I saved money for many years to build a house for myself and my family, then a month ago Israeli authorities sent me a demolition order for building in Area C,” he detailed.

“I hired a lawyer, hoping to get a building permit, given that the house is located on the edge of Aqbat Jaber and that I don’t have a house currently, but I was surprised on Monday morning to see the Israeli army bulldozers arrive,” Karshan said.

“First, the Israeli army got me and my family away from the house and then began to demolish the house in front of my eyes,” he added.

Area C, which includes over 60% of the West Bank surface, is under direct Israeli military control and Palestinians are forbidden to build any structures on this territory.

The Jordan Valley is entirely classified under Area C except for the urban boundaries of the city of Jericho, including the Aqbat Jaber refugee camp at the southern edge of Jericho.

“Israeli forces rarely demolish Palestinian structures so close to Jericho itself,” Fares Fuqaha, field researcher for the Palestinian Al-Haq human rights organization in the Jordan Valley, told The New Arab.

“However, demolitions and property confiscation occur almost daily in the Jordan Valley and around Jericho, including agricultural structures and equipment,” he pointed out.

“There has been an increase of Israeli demolitions and confiscations in the last May,” said Fuqaha.

“Since May and up to the beginning of June, Israeli forces confiscated nine tractors, nine cars and several water tanks, and demolished several greenhouses, a fish breeding pool, and a large 1 million-dollar-worth house west of Jericho,” he added.

“Economically, they destroyed me,” Nasser Zubeidat, a farmer from Marj Naajah village in the northern Jordan Valley, said to The New Arab in regards to the demolition of his 1,000-cubic-meter agricultural pool by Israeli forces in mid-May.

“I used it to irrigate around 50 dunams of land and I bred fish in it too, as a natural fertilizer and as a product,” he said. “Some 70 farmer families benefited from the pool too, and it was an important part of my income-generating,” he stressed.

According to the UN Office of Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs in the Palestinian Territories (OCHA), Israeli forces demolished 235 Palestinian structures in Area C, displacing 206 people in 2022.

Source: The New Arab

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