Occupation forces invade villages for military training
On 30th May 2016 occupation began yet another invasion of Palestinian villages in the northern Jordan Valley, forcibly evicting the men, women and children from their homes.
Under the pretext of military exercises occupation forces entered the villages of Khirbet al Maleh, Hamra and Al Ras al Ahmar with army tanks and personnel carriers. They have asked the 42 families to evacuate their homes to make way for military exercises, including the use of live fire, which is taking place around the homes that Palestinian residents have been forced to vacate.
The families are looking for an alternative to stay to protect their children, women and the elderly. If they don’t find anywhere they will be left outside under the scorching sun siting on the edge of the road, or under any trees they can find. This area is very dangerous in the summer due to the presence of poisonous snakes and scorpions, and temperatures can reach as high as 40 degrees C.
Many of the families have had no choice but to leave behind their farm animals, which are now at risk of injury or death from the military training, or exposure to the sun as they are left with no shelter. Families have also just harvested their wheat crops, and are seriously concerned that these could be destroyed by any sparks arising from firing during the military training.
Over recent weeks local communities have witnessed increased military presence in the area and were fearful that the extensive military training of May 2015 would be repeated, which lasted for a week and caused the destruction of many crops in the area.
The occupation forces have failed to abide by international law, which provides protection for the civilian population living under occupation under the 4th Geneva Convention.
Hence, we demand and we call on the European Union and international governments to stop Israeli violations of human rights and to provide for the protection for civilians in the Jordan Valley. We need concrete action including the cessation of the EU-Israel Association Agreement and the immediate exclusion of Israeli military and security companies from the EU funding cycle Horizon2020.
As we experienced the military invasion of our communities in May 2015 we called on the EU to intervene, and take action against Israel to protect Palestinian communities. Since then the Israel military training has been regular and ongoing.