More than 1,000 Palestinians are facing expulsion from their villages, one of the largest forcible transfers since Israel’s occupation of the West bank in 1967. The Supreme Court in Israel rejected evidence from residents of Masafer Yatta that their presence long preceded the declaration of the area as a ‘firing zone’ from which Palestinians are banned.
The judges also ruled that the Geneva Convention rules against forcible transfer of an occupied population did not apply to a domestic court. The verdict follows more than 40 years of struggle, and eviction leaves the residents homeless and without compensation. The creation of ‘firing zones’ is one of the tools used to misappropriate the land of rural Palestinian communities.
The court’s decision has been condemned by the European Union which sees no ‘imperative military reason’ to transfer the population. A UK Foreign Office official has said that ‘the demolitions and forced evictions are contrary to International Humanitarian Law’. Despite this, very little action is taken against Israel by the international community – in stark contrast to the resolve to punish violations of international law in Ukraine by sanctions against Russia. Rather, Britain seeks to further trade with Israel. You can email the Foreign Secretary via rb.gy/4cdmtr.