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Israel razes Palestinian Bedouin village for ‘196th time’

US Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) (L) talks with Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) during a rally with fellow Democrats before voting on H.R. 1, or the People Act, on the East Steps of the US Capitol on March 08, 2019 in Washington, DC. (AFP photo)
Israeli policemen stand guard as bulldozers demolish homes in the Bedouin village of Umm al-Hiran, near the southern city of Beersheba, January 18, 2017. (File photo by AFP)

Israeli authorities have made dozens of Bedouin Palestinians homeless after demolishing their village in the Negev region for the 196th time, local media reports say.

The Palestinian Information Center, quoting local sources, reported on Monday that Israeli authorities demolished the crude homes and tore apart tents in the Bedouin village of Araqib in the occupied territories, displacing its residents. Dozens of displaced Bedouin citizens, including women and children, were now prone to harsh weather and scorching heat of the desert for the months to come.

Al-Araqib is one of several Bedouin villages in the Negev desert, which are “unrecognized” by the Israeli regime. The village was initially demolished on July 27, 2010, but has since been rebuilt dozens of times by its residents and activists.

Every year, hundreds of Bedouin homes are razed to the ground as part of Israel's settlement expansion projects. Throughout the years, Israel has frequently demolished Palestinian homes, claiming that the structures have been built without permits, which are nearly impossible to obtain.

Israel has tried to change the demographic makeup of al-Quds over the past decades by constructing settlements, destroying historical sites and expelling the local Palestinian population. The regime occupied the West Bank in 1967 before starting to dot the Palestinian territory with settlements and severely restricting the Palestinians' freedom of movement there.

The UN Security Council has condemned Israel’s settlement activities in the occupied territories in several resolutions.

Palestinians want the West Bank as part of a future independent Palestinian state with East al-Quds as its capital.

Settlers attack Palestinian house, vehicles in West Bank

In the latest incident of vandalism and violence against Palestinians, a group of extremist Israeli settlers on Monday attacked vehicles and homes of Palestinians at in Kafr Qaddum village, east of the occupied West Bank city of Qalqiliya.

According to the Palestinian media, the settlers also smashed the windshields and exterior mirrors of a number of vehicles parked in the area. The assailants came from settlement of Kedumim. The latest stone-throwing assault took place under heavy military protection by Israeli forces.

Settler violence against Palestinians and their property is routine in the West Bank and is rarely prosecuted by authorities. Settler violence includes property and mosque arsons, stone-throwing, uprooting of crops and olive trees, attacks on vulnerable homes, among others.

Israeli rights group B’Tselem has documented hundreds of settler attacks against Palestinians and their property in the West Bank this year alone. In a 43-page report released last month, the advocacy group revealed Israel had been using settler violence as a “strategy” to take over the occupied West Bank and expel Palestinians from their own land.

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