The Israeli army and Police officers started on Monday the evacuation of settlement of Netzarim, the last of the 21 in Gaza Strip, Israeli sources said on Monday.
Palestinians hope that this will be the end of the settlements era in the Gaza Strip.
There are currently around 500 people in Netzarim to be evacuated.Ã‚Â The settlers will be boarded in buses to depart to Jerusalem where a prayer at the Wailing will be held then they will be transferred to the West Bank settlement of Ariel, south of Nablus.
Israel promised earlier that Gaza settlers will not be moved to the West Bank and have asked the U.S. for 2.2 billion USD to rehabilitate some areas in the Galilee and the Negev to absorb the settlers.
Apparently, Nitzarim settlers are ready for this day and have agreed to leave the settlement without resistance.
‘We knew this day would come, but we will get over it and move on,’ said Netzarim Rabbi Eyal Vered. ‘We will win, but not with force. God forbid that blood will be spilled.’
Palestinians have suffered tremendously from this settlement and its residents.
The settlement was known to Palestinians by its checkpoint which held thousands of Palestinians for hours on daily basis when going back and forth to the north or the south of the strip.
In the first month of the Intifada, Netzarim junction was the site where 12-year-old Mohammad Al-Durra was killed and his father injured by Israeli troops’ fire.
Graffiti, were found on walls of the settlement, included ‘Sharon, Hitler is proud of you,’ and ‘[Rabin assassin] Yigal Amir, we need you.’
Israeli police source said Graffiti was written by three right-wing activists who were found with paint, flammable liquids and tire-puncturing spikes in their possession.Ã‚Â Police believe the three are a part of a group of up to six activists who apparently entered the settlement in the trunks of cars.
Settlers have asked that foreign press be excluded from Netzarim during the evacuation.