5 July 2011 | International Solidarity Movement, West Bank
At 6 am this morning the Israeli military demolished a water cistern and one house containing 12 persons, 6 of whom are children, in Khallet Sakariya. The military arrived with 13 cars and more than 55 soldiers as well as a bulldozer. The family had not received a warning of the demolition. The children living in the house were deeply traumatized by the event and one was taken to the hospital. The family is now forced to live on the grounds of their demolished house or in nearby caves, with little access to water and no access to electricity.
The house was one year old and the community had appealed its demolition order in court. Usually it takes five years before the appeal is handled and demolition can occur,” a UN official claims. The “legal grounds” for the unexpected demolition are unclear.
The house was on the edge of a valley close to the illegal settlement Allon Shevut. In the area around Khallet Sakariya there are four villages surrounded by illegal settlements. According to one of the villagers the village is exposed to daily harassment by the settlers. On the night between the 26th and 27th of June a farmer got crops of up to 10 000 shekels worth destroyed by the settlers, as well as a stenciled message of “Kill the Arabs” written on her land. The old woman had farmed the land for three years and this was the first time she got any product from it.