Conflict & Justice

Israeli forces evacuate Palestinian tent outpost (PHOTOS)


Israeli border police (back R) evict Palestinian protesters from the scene in the controversial West Bank area known as E1.


Abbas Momani

Israeli forces evacuated at least 100 Palestinians from a tent outpost in the E-1 corridor early Sunday morning. 

The Palestinians were camped out in protest of Israel's plans to build in the E-1, an undeveloped area east of Jerusalem near the Ma'aleh Adumim settlement, according to the Jerusalem Post.  

The IDF soldiers acted despite a ruling Friday by Israel's Supreme Court that the outpost could remain for six days while parties discussed the removal of the tents, Reuters reported

Israeli Police spokesperson Mickey Rosenfeld explained that the court's ruling allowed for the protesters' removal even as their tents remained, for now, Ha'aretz reported

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who is up for reelection in nine days, ordered the area evacuated and blocked off to prevent violence. 

"As soon as I was updated on the Palestinian gathering, I ordered its immediate evacuation and it was indeed carried out last night in the best possible manner," Netanyahu said at Sunday's regular Cabinet meeting, JTA reported.

"I would like to praise the Israel Police, with the support of the IDF, for its rapid and determined operation to evacuate the Palestinian gathering in the area between Jerusalem and Ma'aleh Adumim," he continued, adding that "We will not let anyone harm the contiguity between Jerusalem and Ma'aleh Adumim." 

Rosenfeld said that no arrests were made during the evacuation; Palestinian sources, however, claim that dozens were arrested, Xinhua reported

Protesters who refused to leave the settlement were reportedly carried by Israeli officers and detained, Ha'aretz reported. 

“Israel must choose between settlements and peace,” said Chief PLO negotiator Saeb Erekat to the Jerusalem Post. “The two can’t go together.”

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