Israeli soldiers invaded, on Wednesday morning, several Arab villages in the Negev, and demolished four homes in what Israel describes as “unrecognized villages”. The soldiers invaded Beer Hadaj village, and demolished two homes, including a home that belongs to resident Jom’a Abu Hadeera, 110 year old; the oldest man in the area.
The soldiers proceeded to demolish another home that belongs to resident Ahmad Al-‘Oweiwy.
In Rakhma village, the army demolished a home that was built two years ago; the home belongs to resident Odah As-Saghayra, his wife and seven children.
In October of last year, Israeli daily, Haaretz, reported that a steering committee in Israel’s Prime Minister’s Office has approved “a five-year economic development plan for Israeli Bedouin”.
This is another step along the road to the implementation of the “Prawer recommendations”, which are presented as a “development plan” for the “improvement of living conditions” for all citizens of the Negev – but with the mass expulsion of the Bedouin Palestinian citizens at the heart of the proposal.
The exact number of ‘unrecognized villages’ to be destroyed in the Negev is unclear. While a commonly cited estimate for the anticipated number of displaced is 30,000, an advisor to Shimon Peres told US officials in 2005 that the “development of the Negev” would mean “displacement of some 65,000 Bedouin living in unrecognized villages” (which, taking into account natural population growth, is roughly the total number of Bedouin citizens living in all unrecognized villages).
Al-Araqeeb village in the Negev is one of the most impacted “unrecognized villages” as it was destroyed more than 30 times.
The Prawer plan calls for annexing more than 700.000 Dunams (185329 acres) and displacing the residents by demolishing 14 villages in the area.
All unrecognized villages in the Negev are under continuing Israeli attacks and violations, as Tel Aviv does not recognize the residents’ right to live on their land — land they inhabited long before the 1948 creation of the state of Israel in historic Palestine.