Night of clashes in Ramallah during Israeli house demolition

The Israeli army stormed the occupied West Bank city of Ramallah on Wednesday (June 7th). All night long, the city turned into a huge battlefield. The goal? Demolish the home of a Palestinian accused of carrying out a double bombing at bus stops in Jerusalem last November. Since last January, Israel has systematically destroyed the homes of Palestinians accused of carrying out anti-Israeli attacks. The government defends the deterrent effect of this policy but its critics denounce a collective punishment affecting families who find themselves on the street.

Palestinians stand outside Islam Faroukh's demolished apartment, seen on the poster hanging on the building's façade, in the West Bank city of Ramallah on Thursday, June 8, 2023. AP - Nasser Nasser

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With our correspondent in Ramallah, Alice Froussard

It was almost midnight when about sixty jeeps burst into the Ramallah Tahta district, the most commercial of the old city, where there are also cafes and restaurants.

The sound of stun grenades mingles with that of stones thrown at vehicles by young Palestinians, then begins a long night of clashes and the neighborhood turns into a scene of war. There are gunshots, fireworks, the sound of ambulance sirens.

At least 35 people were wounded, 20 with live ammunition, including a Palestinian journalist, who was targeted by the army while filming the operation.

This type of raid is not common in Ramallah, these scenes are much more common in cities like Nablus or Jenin in the northern West Bank.

'Collective punishment'

The army is on the scene, she said, to demolish the apartment of Islam Froukh, the Palestinian prisoner accused by Israel of being behind a bomb attack at two bus stops in Jerusalem on November 23, killing two people.

Shortly before 6am on Thursday, a bang sounded: the army blew up his apartment on the first floor of a four-man building. "A collective punishment" for his family, parents and four sisters who lived here with him, denounce the Palestinians.

According to the family, a petition had been sent to the Supreme Court asking that the apartment be sealed, not demolished, affecting all the foundations of the building, but Israel refused.

>> READ ALSO: Three Palestinian fighters killed by Israel in a refugee camp

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  • Israeli-Palestinian conflict
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