Palestinians, leftists try to take over Hebron house

Security forces evacuate 20 Palestinians, left-wing activists from house located one kilometer from Machpelah house. Palestinians: We have permit from Civil Administration

Some 20 Palestinians and left wing activists on Wednesday were evacuated from a house in Hebron after attempting to barricade inside the building.

The Palestinians claimed they obtained a permit from the Civil Administration to enter the house, which was ordered by the IDF to remain uninhabited due to its strategic location.

Photo: Eli Mandelbaum

Scene near Hebron house -Photo by Eli Mandelbaum

The house is located about a kilometer from the Machpelah house, which was evicted Wednesday afternoon by Yasam police officers after Jewish settlers claimed to have purchased it legally.

ליד הבית שעליו ניסו להשתלט  (צילום: אלי מנדלבאום)

Scene near Hebron house - Photo: Eli Mandelbaum

Officers raided the Machpelah house and cleared the settlers from the premises within minutes. A few settlers who refused to evacuate the house voluntarily were forcibly removed by police officers.

About an hour after the evacuation, Jewish youths from Hebron arrived at the West Bank city’s Abu Sneina neighborhood and confronted Arab residents. Border Guard officers were alerted to the scene to clear the youths from the area.

The affair began last week when dozens of settlers moved into the house, which is located near the Cave of the Patriarchs, claiming they had purchased it from its Palestinian owners.

Palestinians who claim to be the rightful owners of the house in Hebron told Ynet Tuesday that the house was never sold to anyone – Jewish or otherwise.

The house was declared a closed military zone, and the Civil Administration issued an eviction order for the settlers, which stated that “in Hebron a fragile status quo is maintained between the Israeli and Palestinian population. Upholding this status quo prevents confrontations that may lead to loss of life.”

The settlers, for their part, denied the claim and said that the Civil Administration has not even examined the legality of the sale of the building.


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By Itamar Fleishman