Everything you need to know about Khan al-Ahmar

October 16, 2018
Here is what you need to know about the village, and why rights groups and world leaders are describing Israel’s plans as a war crime.

Dozens of schoolchildren from the Khan al-Ahmar eco-school demonstrate outside the president’s residence in Jerusalem, demanding Chancellor Angela Merkel intervene and prevent Israel from demolishing their school

+972 staff write, “For nearly a decade, the community of Khan al-Ahmar has been fighting the Israeli government’s attempts to evacuate its village, located just north of Jerusalem, and move its residents to a garbage dump in East Jerusalem. Now, after a green light from Israel’s High Court of Justice, the hamlet is under imminent threat of demolition.”

“Why does Israel say it wants to destroy Khan al-Ahmar? The Israeli government says the village was built on state land without the required permits or a master plan. For Palestinians in Area C of the West Bank, under direct Israeli control — and where Khan al-Ahmar is located — obtaining building permits is often close to impossible.”

“Who lives in Khan al-Ahmar? The village is made up of around 180 members of the Jahalin Bedouin tribe, which has a 70-year-long history of dispossession and forced relocation by the Israeli government. Before Israel’s establishment, the Jahalin lived in the area of Tel Arad in the Negev, located in present-day Israel. Following the 1948 war, the Israeli military forced them out of their villages and into the West Bank; they settled in the pink, rocky hills of what today is known as Mishor Adumim in the early 1970s. Most of the villagers live in makeshift tin shacks or tents, and make their living off grazing.”…

Residents of the Bedouin village of Khan al-Ahmar

” What is Israel’s bigger-picture reason for wanting to demolish the village? The destruction of Khan al-Ahmar and displacement of its residents is part of Israel’s plan to expand its settlements in the E-1 area, a 12 sq. kilometer area located between Jerusalem and the West Bank settlement of Ma’ale Adumim. For decades, Israel has hoped to build up the area with settlements in order to connect the two cities — effectively cutting off Palestinian East Jerusalem from the rest of the West Bank. Doing so would also bifurcate the West Bank, leading to what many have described as the nail in the coffin of the two-state solution.” (more…)

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