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Israeli army demolishes water cisterns in Khashem Ad-Daraj, South Hebron Hills

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Published on Dec 17, 2010

Monday 14th December 2010 - On the early morning, five bulldozers, escorted by several Israeli army, border police and DCO (the Israeli army branch dealing with civil administration) vehicles, reached Khashem Ad Daraj -- Hathaleen area and demolished five water cisterns belonging to the bedouin communities of the area.

These villages are situated in Area C, where, according to the Oslo Agreements, Israel maintains the complete military and civil control.

Among the demolished structures, there were also two wells built about 70 years ago, which have been filled with earth by the bulldozers. As these structures were built before the Israeli occupation of Palestinian territories in 1967, their demolition is an evident violation of both international and Israeli military laws concerning the protection of private property in occupied territories.

According to the DCO officials attending the demolitions, the Civil Administration had never issued any permit for the water cisterns, that hence received a demolition order. The destruction of the water wells and cisterns directly impacts the livelihood of Palestinian communities in south Hebron.

The Israeli policy in Area C is to prevent the development of Palestinian communities, by denying building permits and by demolishing any structure which is considered "illegal". In the meantime, Israeli settlements and outposts in the area, despite being illegal according to the international law, keep on expanding while the settlers continue to attack Palestinians without undergoing any legal consequence.

This policy of restrictions, closures, demolitions, evacuations and harassment, together with the ongoing violence by the Israeli settlers in the area, denies the Palestinian human rights, by hindering the villagers ability to cultivate their lands and by preventing the development of the local communities.

For more information: http://goo.gl/WlxTk

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