Israeli forces demolish Palestinian homes in the Jordan Valley

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Israeli forces have accelerated housing demolition in the Jordan Valley in order to expand settlements. In the most recent case, forces raided a small village near Jericho at dawn, demolishing two houses and animal sheds. The residents stated that this is part of an ethinic cleansing policy so Israel can claim the entire Jordan Valley area and rid of it's indigenous population. Israeli forces demolished two Palestinian houses and a number of outhouses in the village of Faqeh in the North West of Jericho. Israeli bulldozers, protected by Israeli soldiers, demolished houses and sheds belonging to three Bedouin families from the Zaid tribe. They used tear gas and sound bombs to scare the residents out of their homes before the demolition. I spoke to Sliman Mohamad Zaid who lives in the village. He stated that that Israeli army raided the village whilst they were sleeping and gave them no time to collect their belongings. They also beat the women and children when they attempted to collect their belongings. Slimans brother, father of 5 and owner of one of the houses stated that they have been made to live in small tents and have nowhere else to live. Although residents were given warning not build in the area in 2010, they were issued no demolition orders and the Israeli officers held no official orders on the day of demoltion. Tel Aviv's policy of housing demolitons generally takes place in area C: Palestinian owned land under Israeli military control which totals 60% of the West Bank. Chief Negotiator of the Palestinian Authority Saeb Erekat made a statement this week that there is an acceleration of aggressive settlement activity and housing demolitions by Israel, particularly in the Jordan Valley area 'This is part of Israel's plan to destroy any possibility for a Palestinian State, by annexing and changing the status quo of Jerusalem, the Jordan Valley and other vast areas of the Occupied State of Palestine." Villagers in the Jordan Valley say the crisis there is worsening, as Tel Aviv continues to implement its policy of ethnic cleansing by demolishing homes and creating ghettos to house the bedouin population. They're calling on the Palestinian Authority to make Israel face justice for these crimes at the ICC rather than trying to restart talks with Tel Aviv.

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