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Hundreds protest against Negev house demolitions

Jan. 9, 2014 2:07 P.M. (Updated: Jan. 10, 2014 9:30 P.M.)
BEERSHEBA (Ma'an) -- Hundreds of Palestinians with Israeli citizenship demonstrated in Beersheba outside of the office for The Authority for the Regulation of Bedouin Settlement in the Negev on Thursday to protest ongoing house demolitions.

The demonstrators chanted the Palestinian national anthem and waved Palestinian flags as Israeli police closed all roads leading to the office and deployed hundreds of officers in the area.

Protesters also carried signs with the names of 44 unrecognized Bedouin villages and chanted against the Prawer Plan.

Mayor of Rahat, Tala al-Qreinawi, told Ma'an that he joined the hundreds of protesters, describing the Israeli authority as "a second government which endeavors to displace the Bedouins and steal their lands."

Despite announcing that the Prawer Plan was scrapped in December, Israeli authorities have continued to implement it on the ground with ongoing demolitions and land confiscations, the mayor said.

"The bill is being studied in the Knesset and we can't see any intentions to stop it," al-Qreinawi added.

Sheikh Raed Salah, head of the Islamic Movement in northern Israel, said that the ongoing protests are a decisive battle and Israel is trying to impose a new Nakba on the Palestinians.

"The racist mentality which is trying to get rid of the Triangle and its residents, is trying to impose settlement policies in the Triangle, Galilee, Acre and other cities," he added.
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