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Monday, December 31, 2012
Israeli forces order Jordan Valley evacuation of 100 Palestinian families for training

Israeli forces order Jordan Valley evacuation for training
Published today (updated) 31/12/2012 18:44
http://www.maannews.net/eng/ViewDetails.aspx?ID=552377

NABLUS (Ma’an) -- Israeli forces have delivered evacuation orders to around
100 Palestinian families in the northern Jordan Valley ahead of a military
training exercise, a local official said Monday.

The evacuation affects around 1,000 Palestinians living in rural communities
around Wadi al-Maleh, local mayor Arif Daraghma told Ma’an.

They must leave their homes by Wednesday for 48 hours, or they will be
subject to penalties, he said.

The orders explain that Israeli troops will be holding military drills in
the area.

"To ensure the safety of the local inhabitants, temporary eviction notices
were distributed today to the residents of the illegal structures located in
a closed military zone to be used in the exercise," Israel's army said in a
statement.

The residents will be allowed to return after the military exercises have
been completed.

"It should be emphasized that these structures, located in closed military
zones actively used by the IDF, are illegal in nature," the statement added.

This week's evacuation follows a similar exercise in November, when hundreds
of Palestinians in the Jordan Valley were ordered from their homes ahead of
a military exercise in the area, which is designated a closed military zone.

The UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs says Israel has
designated around 18 percent of the West Bank as closed military zones, an
area roughly equal in size to Area A, the 17.7 percent of the West Bank
under Palestinian Authority control.

Around 5,000 Palestinians live in Israeli military firing zones in the West
Bank, UNOCHA says. Since 2010, Israel has demolished the homes of 820
Palestinians located in firing zones.

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