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Occupation magazine - Activism

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Rebuilding Kha`let Mak’hul in the Jordan Valley Friday, October 11, 2013 8am
Rebuilding Kha`let Mak’hul in the Jordan Valley
Friday, October 11, 2013 8am
Today, Friday, October 11, Israeli peace and human rights activists will travel
to the Palestinian village of Khalet Mak’hul, which had been several times
destroyed and its inhabitants harassed and persecuted by the occupation
authorities. The army blocked several attempts by human rights organizations and
even by accredited European diplomats to bring aid. Harassment continues also in
violation of a specific ruling by the High Court in Jerusalem. But we will not
let governmental violence deter us. We are determined to reach out to the
courageous residents of Mak’hul and help them erect new shelters instead of
those destroyed. We fully intend to get there, even if the army tried to bar our
way.
WE CANNOT STAND BY while Mak’hul’s hundred residents, young and old, women and
children alike, remain abandoned without shelter or water.
WE CANNOT STAND BY while Mak’hul’s 1500 livestock (sheep, chickens and doves)
remain without shelter or water. Twelve sheep have already perished from heat
stroke.
Participating organizations: Civil Disobedience, Coalition of Women for Peace,
Gush Shalom, Hithabrut-Tarabut, Machsom Watch, Public Committee against Torture
in Israel, Rabbis for Human Rights, Ta`ayush: Arab-Jewish Partnership, the
Alternative Information Center, Yesh Gvul
On Friday, October 11, buses will leave at 8:00am from:
• Tel Aviv: Arlozorov Street Railway Station
• Jerusalem: Gan Hapa`amon (Liberty Bell Park)

For more information call
Daphne Banai Tel - 052 2575938,
Aviva Hay Tel - 054 6669531
Or email : ybanai@netvision.net.il

Background:
Following Israel’s occupation of the West Bank in 1967, the Alon Plan was
formulated by the highly influential minister Yigal Alon, Under it, Israel would
retain control of the Jordan Valley. In pursuit of this aim, successive Israeli
governments have attempted to evict the legal residents of the Jordan Valley so
as to remove the “inconvenient” Arab presence there.

As part of this policy, in 1969 the State of Israel destroyed the village of
Khalet Mak’hul and later blocked all of its natural water wells. Nevertheless,
villagers persisted in living on the spot, under difficult conditions, up to the
present. The present shepherds and farmers are descendants of inhabitants of the
pre-1967 village. They are not nomads but permanent residents of this privately
owned land. This, however, is denied by the state authorities which regard them
as “recently-arrived squatters”.
In recent months the occupation authorities have accelerated demolitions of
Palestinian homes in the area, demolishing communities in El Hadidya, Humsa, Ras
el Ahmar and further south in A-Za`im in Area E1. Several of these communities
have been demolished several times in a very short period, what inhabitants
managed to re-erect being destroyed again. Khalet Mak’hul has not escaped being
included in this wave.
September 16: The State of Israel demolishes the tin shacks and tents, homes to
the residents of the village Khalet Mak’hul in the Jordan Valley. Since then,
the State of Israel continues to prevent the delivery of humanitarian aid to the
people of Mak’hul who for 23 days have been left without shade or shelter under
the scorching sun.
September 20: Soldiers a truck full of tents and emergency aid that European
diplomats had been trying to deliver to Khalet Mak’hul. Concussion grenades were
thrown at the convoy. a group of diplomats, aid workers and locals in the West
Bank, and pulling a French diplomat out of the truck before driving away with
its contents. French diplomat Marion Castaing was dragged me out of the truck
and forced to the ground with no regard for her diplomatic immunity.

September 24: Israel’s High Court rules that the people of Mak’hul cannot be
removed from their village nor can their shelters be destroyed until the matter
is reviewed by the court at a later date.
Despite the High Court’s ruling, the State of Israel via the IDF continues to
prevent humanitarian aid and supplies from reaching Mak’hul. The unstated goal
is to evict these people from their land.
Moreover, on October 3, violations against the residents of Mak’hul reached a
new record. In the dead of night, approximately 30 soldiers ripped and
demolished the only shelters that the villagers had managed to restore (five
shaky shelters covered with torn plastic sheets). These were thereupon burned
while terrified Mak’hul residents looked on.
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