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Israel destroys land, water wells in West Bank

Israel has occupied the West Bank since 1967 [Getty]

Date of publication: 25 July, 2019

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Israeli forces have destroyed land and water wells south of the occupied West Bank on Wednesday.
The Israeli army destroyed land and water wells the south of the occupied West Bank, a local activist has said on Wednesday.

Coordinator of the national and popular committees Rateb Jabour in southern the West Bank, said occupying Israeli forces bulldozed four water wells and destroyed trees that were planted in land that was razed in Khirbet Umm al-Khair in Masafer Yatta.

Two weeks ago the Israeli forces destroyed a children's park, nine water wells and uprooted forest trees in Umm al-Khair's nature reserve area, claiming the reserve sat under a military training zone, he added.

Residents of Umm al-Khair and surrounding villages depend on the water for irrigating their land and for their cattle, Jabour said.

He added that Israel is trying to displace these residents, many of whom are herders to take over the land in the wider scheme to annex the occupied West Bank.

Illegal occupation

Israel took over mainly Palestinian east Jerusalem in the 1967 Six-Day War and later annexed it in a move never recognised by the international community.

It now considers the entire city its capital, citing Jewish historical and biblical connection there.

The Palestinians see east Jerusalem, which includes the Old City, as the capital of their future state.

Some 320,000 Palestinians live in east Jerusalem, while the Israeli settler population there has grown to 210,000.

The Oslo agreement of 1995 divided the occupied West Bank into three: area A, area B and area C.

Area A is under the administrative and security control of the Palestinian Authority. Area B's administration is controlled by the PA, with Israel controlling security. Area C is under full administrative and security control of Israel.

All Israeli settlements across the occupied West Bank are classed as illegal under international law, particularly Article 49 of the Fourth Geneva Convention, which asserts that "the occupying power shall not deport or transfer parts of its own civilian population into the territory it occupies".

Israeli forces and settlers routinely attack Palestinians in the occupied territories, demolishing their homes, poisoning their livestock and vandalising properties.

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