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Israeli forces demolish 2 homes near Hebron

July 15, 2010 5:43 P.M. (Updated: July 16, 2010 2:33 P.M.)
Hebron – Ma'an – The owner of one of two homes demolished southwest of Hebron said he produced paperwork to prove his home was constructed with a permit, but that bulldozers razed his home anyway.

Speaking on behalf of the home owner, head of the Abu Al A'rqan-village council Mohammad Ash-Shawamreh said Israeli troops entered the village with orders to demolish the homes of Fathi Mahmoud Ash-Shawamreh and Mustafa Ibrahim Ash-Shawamreh. Fathi is currently being held in an Israeli prison.

Palestinian security sources said soldiers accompanied a bulldozer into the village, and added that the principal reason for the demolitions was the proximity of the homes to the illegal Israeli settlement Otni'el.

Mohammad told Ma'an that bulldozers first demolished Fathi's home. Mustafa's family - who had gone to court to protest an earlier stop work order - produced documents proving that the home was not built illegally, which was the principal reason for its demolition.

According to the village leader, bulldozers continued with the demolition, which was only partially completed when the papers were produced, telling the family that the home was "no longer safe," and would be demolished as a precaution.

An Israeli spokesman for the Civil Administration, which administers the civil control of areas under Israeli military control, confirmed the two home demolitions, and said he would look into the report that one of the homes destroyed was done so on false pretexts.

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