JERUSALEM, Saturday, January 5, 2019 (WAFA) – Israeli occupation forces on Saturday banned Palestinian citizens, including Palestinian Authority officials, from entering the village of Khan al-Ahmar, east of Jerusalem.
Forces obstructed a convoy while on its way to Khan al-Ahmar, and briefly detained Minister Walid Assaf, Chairman of the PA’s Commission Against Settlements and the Wall, as well as Mahmoud al-Aloul, Deputy Chairman of ruling Fatah movement. The two officials along others including journalists and activists were denied access to the village, according to witnesses.
Earlier in the day, Israeli occupation forces set up a number of checkpoints on roads leading to the village, and interrogated some of the Palestinian drivers and passengers, some of whom were ordered by the forces to get back.
The two officials and the other activists were on their way to the village to attend a rally commemorating the 54th anniversary of the founding of Fatah movement. Khan al-Ahmar was chosen by Fatah for this rally in solidarity with its Bedouin population who are at the risk of being displaced and having their homes demolished by Israeli occupation authorities.
In May 2018, the Israeli High Court of Justice determined that its residents could be evicted. The United Nations, the International Criminal Court, the European Parliament and Amnesty International have stated that the demolition of the village would be a violation of international law, being a breach of the Fourth Geneva Convention, and may amount to a war crime.
On October 20, 2018, the Israeli government announced that it would postpone the demolition until a negotiated resolution is found.