When did Israel annex the West Bank?
Israeli security forces on Friday began confiscating vehicles from vehicles belonging to residents of West Bank villages in an attempt to evict Palestinians from their homes, a move that has alarmed many Israelis who fear it will stifle the movement of Palestinians to work, shop and study.
The vehicles are being taken away in the Ramallah area of the West Jerusalem neighborhood of Kiryat Arba, a small area that is largely home to the Al-Aqsa Mosque compound and the Al Aqsa mosque compound.
A spokesman for the Israeli Civil Administration, which oversees the area, confirmed the confiscation.
The spokesman said that vehicles were confiscated on the pretext of enforcing the law of armed occupation.
The move came after Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said that Israel would not allow the residents of the Al Quds-Hijra neighborhood of Al-Tulkarem to return to their homes until the Israeli-Palestinian conflict ends.
The Al-Hajar neighborhood, which has been under Israeli military control since 1967, has been the site of intense fighting since October.
It is a development that is seen by some Israelis as an attempt by Netanyahu to stifle Palestinian resistance to the Israeli occupation.
The West Bank, where nearly 90 percent of the Palestinian population lives, is also under Israeli control.
In a statement, the Civil Administration said the move “is in accordance with law and has been in place for several weeks, and is in line with the orders of the Israeli civil administration.”
The Civil Administration did not elaborate on what specific restrictions had been placed on the residents.
The Palestinians are also in the process of returning to their neighborhoods and villages, the statement added.
The West Bank is also home to about two-thirds of the Gaza Strip, which was recently occupied by Israel.