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Masafer Yatta

Updated: Apr 22, 2023

For twenty-two years, residents of villages in the South Hebron Hills fought for their right to remain in their homes. In May 2022 the Israeli Supreme Court ruled that the area should stay a firing zone. The decision to declare a firing zone in an area inhabited with villages since the time of the Jordanian rule was not based on security needs but on the need of the State of Israel to takeover and to create a territorial contiguity.

On January 2, 2023, representatives of the Israeli DCO (District Coordination Office) informed the Palestinian Authority Representative that in the coming days, residents of the villages in Masafer Yatta would receive eviction orders from their homes.

For years Israel has made the residents life in Masafer Yatta intolerable, but in the last few months it has worsened: Blocking access to water and land, preventing construction of homes and public buildings, confiscation of vehicles, demolition of buildings including schools, intimidation and firing of stun grenades and tear gas for no apparent reason.

Forcible transfer of these people from their homes is a war crime by international law. Nevertheless, the Israeli military is preparing the eviction detailed plan. One thousand people are about to lose their way of life and their property. Will Israel make this nightmare real? Will Israel commit this crime?

The picture below demonstrates the Israeli military conduct: No one is allowed to cross this line of stones, and why? Simply because they [the soldiers] can do it. And a few minutes later stun grenades were shot.

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