Israeli Supreme Court allows demolition of Palestinian village in West Bank

The structures in Khan al-Ahmar are mostly constructed from tin sheets and wooden panels (Yumna Patel/MEE)

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SULAIMANI — Ignoring the pleas of European governments and senior US politicians, Israel's Supreme Court ruled on Thursday (May 24) in favor of demolishing a Palestinian village in the occupied West Bank.

Campaigners said the hearing was the final appeal open to the village of Khan al-Ahmar, located along a main highway that leads to the Dead Sea and surrounded by several illegal Israeli settlements east of Jerusalem, according to the Middle East Eye.

It was unclear when the demolition of the village, home to about 180 residents, would take place.

The community comprised of some 35 families belonging to the Jahalin Bedouin tribe have had their makeshift homes and schools, mostly made of corrugated metal and wood, demolished by the Israeli army several times in past years.

Israel intends to demolish the village as part of the so-called E1 plan, which involves building hundreds of settlement units to link the settlements of Kfar Adumim and Ma’ale Adumim with East Jerusalem in the Israeli-controlled Area C of the West Bank.

In its ruling the court said it found "no reason to intervene in the decision of the Minister of Defense to implement the demolition orders issued against the illegal structures in Khan al-Ahmar.”

The Palestinian presidency denounced Thursday's court ruling, calling it a racist effort to "uproot the legal Palestinian citizens from their land to control it and to replace them with settlers.”

Israeli settlements in the occupied West Bank are illegal under international law, which Israel disputes.