‘They beat her’

Israeli border police reportedly rip headscarf off woman, drawing attention to demolition of Palestinian village

Israeli policemen detain a Palestinian girl later identified as Sarah Abu Dahouk in the Palestinian Bedouin village of al-Khan al-Ahmar near Jericho in the occupied West Bank July 4, 2018. (REUTERS/Mohamad Torokman)

Video and photos of Israeli authorities appearing to rip the headscarf off a young Palestinian woman before wrestling her to the ground and dragging her away have gone viral, highlighting the plight of Palestinians living in Area C, which makes up 61 percent of the West Bank and is controlled by the Israeli government and military. The woman, identified as Sarah Abu Dahouk, was targeted by Israeli border police along with scores of Palestinian and international protesters who sought to prevent Israeli developers from bulldozing the Bedouin village of Khan al-Ahmar, which is home to 180 people — roughly half of whom are children. Video of the incident first made its way online on Thursday — after protesters sought to stop the bulldozers that arrived alongside security forces at Khan al-Ahmar on Wednesday.

“They beat her severely and arrested her,” said Hadi Baran, a photographer who witnessed and helped document the incident, in comments made to BuzzFeed News.

In May, Israel’s Supreme Court gave developers permission to go ahead with the destruction of the village, in spite of the objections of its non-Israeli residents, on the basis that it was built in Area C without a necessary construction permit. According to Al Jazeera, Israeli authorities routinely deny Palestinians construction permits so that Israeli developers can continue the expansion of illegal Jewish-only housing settlements in the area, and data collected by the United Nations has shown that Israeli authorities approved only 1.5 percent of all permit requests by Palestinians between 2010 and 2014. The villagers, who have reportedly lived in the area since as early as 1953, have said that they believe they are being removed so that Israel can continue to settle their land — a claim which is perhaps bolstered by the recent construction of two Jewish-only settlements surrounding it.

On Thursday night, the Israeli Supreme court announced that the demolition should be postponed until July 11, when the high court is expected to decisively determine the village’s fate. The condition of the woman, or even her location, were not made clear following her arrest.

Watch video of the incident below.

Read the full story and see more photos of the incident at BuzzFeed.

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