Israel is ramping up its ethnic cleansing of the Palestinian people. In January 2022, the Salhiya family in Sheikh Jarrah became the latest Palestinian family forced out of their home. Israeli armed police raided the Salhiya’s home in the middle of the night; violently assaulting Mahmoud Salhiya and his children, firing tear gas and rubber bullets at those demonstrating against their forced removal, and demolishing the family home with a bulldozer — reducing it to rubble. In Sheikh Jarrah, the neighbouring district of Silwan, and across Jerusalem, over 4,000 Palestinians are facing the threat of home demolitions or eviction.
Elsewhere, indigenous Palestinian Bedouin communities in al-Naqab are fiercely defending their land and homes from a militarised campaign by the Jewish National Fund (JNF), in coordination with the Israeli state. Under the guise of forestation, the JNF has been razing Palestinian Bedouin lands and bulldozing homes, in order to plant trees, forcing Palestinians off their land. The thousands of Palestinians resisting this ethnic cleansing have been met with rubber-coated bullets, tear gas, stun grenades, skunk water, and arbitrary arrest by Israeli forces. In the past ten years, Israel has demolished over 10,000 Palestinian homes in al-Naqab.
In Jerusalem and al-Naqab, Israel is suppressing the Palestinian population in order to manipulate the demographic of these areas in favour of a Jewish majority, and to maintain Jewish-Israeli control over the land. Israel’s policies amount to apartheid and ethnic cleansing.
Ethnic cleansing is a war crime, and the backbone of Israel’s settler-colonial project. It is made possible by international complicity. Demand that the UK government takes action to stop facilitating Israeli apartheid: by banning trade with illegal Israeli settlements and ending its arms trade with Israel.