Israeli soldiers attacked on Wednesday at dawn “Khirbit Yizra” village in the Jordan Valley of the occupied West Bank, and displaced its residents under the claim that the area is a “closed military zone”.Local sources reported that the soldiers displaced more than 200 shepherds living in the area after surrounding and isolating it.
Mokhlis Masaeed, head of the Khirbit Yizra village Council, said that the army moved artillery equipment, tanks, and armored vehicles into the area in order to use it as a military training zone, especially since the geography of the area is similar to southern Lebanon.
Masaeed added that there are already three Israeli military bases in the area, and that several residents have been killed and wounded by stray bullets fired by the army during training.
The residents have been repeatedly displaced since Israel occupied the West Bank following the 1967 six-day war.
On Tuesday, the army demolished 13 structures owned by Arab Bedouins in the Al-Farisiyya and Al-Meita areas, in Wadi Al Maleh, in the northern Jordan Valley.
Eight homes were demolished in the Al Meita area in the upper Wadi Al Maleh, home to hundreds of Bedouins, although the homes are far away from the Israeli military camps. Six more homes were leveled in the nearby Al-Farisiyya area.
The attack is one of several similar attacks carried out by the army in the same area in the last few months.
Wadi Al Maleh (Salt Valley) is known for its warm climate and natural water resources in addition to its rural richness that serves the farmers and shepherds in the areas of Tubas and Tammoun.
These resources are also among the reasons Israel wants to remove the Palestinians from the area in order to replace them with settlers and tourist facilities.
In April 2010, the army declared the area a closed military zone, handed the local Palestinian residents notices to evacuate, and prevented them using the land in any way.