Friday, March 6, 2009

Suddenly, Home Was Gone

By Eva Bartlett

"BEIT HANOUN, Gaza, Mar 6 (IPS) - Dates in the calendar to mark the rights of women mean little to Manwa Tarrabin (56) and her two daughters. They have lost home, and any rights to it.

Until Jan. 17, they were living in a small bungalow in the Al-Amal quarter of Beit Hanoun, within 200 metres of Gaza's eastern border, in a region declared by the Israeli authorities a 'closed military zone'.

Prior to the three weeks of Israeli air, sea and land attacks on Gaza it had been a tidy home at the top of a slight rise, surrounded by open fields and a smattering of olive and fruit trees. Following the withdrawal of Israeli troops, the house is a pancake of angles and debris, one of 80 homes demolished in the Beit Hanoun border area.....

Among the crimes of war Israel is being accused of are the intentional destruction of civilian property, illegal under international human rights law and humanitarian law, including the Fourth Geneva Convention. Such destruction has been common also in areas outside Beit Hanoun, such as the Abed Rabbo region east of Jabaliya and the Attatra region in the north-west of Gaza, besides Gaza City itself.

The organisation Save the Children estimates that 100,000 people (56 percent of them children) are homeless following the attacks......."

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