Israeli Foreign Minister: ‘Israel’ afraid to demolish Khan Al Ahmar again as ICC launches war crimes investigation

Occupied Palestine (QNN)- Israeli Foreign Minister Yisrael Katz said that the Israeli government has been “afraid” of demolishing and displacing the unrecognized Bedouin village of Khan al Ahmar for the 170th time over concerns such an act would be the “last straw” for the International Criminal Court, according to Israeli Channel 11.

The minister’s statement follows the decision by ICC chief prosecutor, Fatou Bensouda, to open a full investigation into Israeli war crimes in the West Bank and occupied Jerusalem.

Bensouda said on Friday she is “satisfied that there is a reasonable basis to proceed with an investigation into the situation in Palestine” and urged judges to rule on the court’s jurisdiction “without undue delay”.

The ICC has the authority to hear cases of war crimes, genocide and crimes against humanity committed on the territory of the 123 countries that have signed up to it. The occupation state has not joined the court but the Palestinian Authority has done so.

The community of Khan Al Ahmar has been fighting the occupation state’s efforts to evacuate the village for over a decade. The village is made up of around 180 members of the Jahalin Bedouin tribe, which has a 70-year-long history of dispossession and forced relocation by the Israeli government. The occupation state has already demolished the village 169 times so far.

Before the creation of ‘Israel’, the Jahalin lived in the area of Tel Arad in the Negev, located in present-day ‘Israel’. During the Nakbah, the Israeli military forced them out of their villages and into the West Bank; they settled in the pink, rocky hills of what today is known as Mishor Adumim in the early 1970s. Most of the villagers live in makeshift tin shacks or tents, and make their living off grazing.

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