Israel evacuates Palestinian ‘outpost’
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Israel evacuates Palestinian ‘outpost’

Makeshift protest village near Jerusalem was second of its kind to pop up in a month

Palestinian protestors gather next to tents erected near the West Bank village of Beit Iksa, between Ramallah and Jerusalem, on Sunday (photo credit: Issam Rimawi/Flash90)
Palestinian protestors gather next to tents erected near the West Bank village of Beit Iksa, between Ramallah and Jerusalem, on Sunday (photo credit: Issam Rimawi/Flash90)

After receiving the go-ahead from the authorities, security forces early Monday morning descended on a a Palestinian protest camp northwest of Jerusalem, removed makeshift structures and evacuated the protesters on-site.

The action came hours after the Civil Administration in the West Bank issued an evacuation order for the Palestinian protest camp, which was set up over the weekend near the village of Beit Iksa.

The mayor of Beit Iksa said security forces who arrived at the site were backed by heavy machinery and tractors, and sealed off access to the outpost.

The camp comprised four tents and a makeshift structure used for prayer, according to Israel Radio. Palestinian activists said in a statement on Friday that they were “securing land from Israel.”

Earlier in January, a similar Palestinian camp was erected in the controversial E1 corridor, which connects East Jerusalem and the large settlement of Ma’aleh Adumim.

Critics say settlement expansion in the corridor would make a contiguous Palestinian state in the West Bank nearly impossible.

Israeli security forces dismantled that camp, dubbed Bab a-Shams, on Wednesday, following a ruling by the High Court of Justice that it was not located on private Palestinian-owned land.

With both camps, Palestinian activists appear to be employing tactics used by Jewish settlers, who set up outposts in the West Bank hoping to take ownership of the land by changing facts on the ground.

The Civil Administration is the Israeli governing body that functions in the West Bank.

Yifa Yaakov contributed to this report.

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