Israeli forces have demolished the homes of two Palestinian men in the southern West Bank over their alleged role in a deadly shooting attack at a shopping market in Tel Aviv in early June.
Hundreds of Israeli soldiers stormed the city of Yatta south of al-Khalil (Hebron) on Wednesday night and leveled the houses of cousins, Khalid and Muhammad Makhamreh.
A video posted online by the Israeli army showed military bulldozers demolishing Khalid’s family house and troops placing explosives in Muhammad’s house and remotely detonating it.
Locals said Israeli troops forced the residents of both houses to evacuate before tearing the structures down.
On June 8, four Israelis were killed and six others injured in a shooting attack at Tel Aviv’s trendy Sarona Market. The attackers were dressed as ultra-Orthodox Jews, but police later claimed that they were of Palestinian origin.
The attack was launched in two locations, one in the actual complex and one in an adjacent street. Khalid and Muhammad Makhamreh have been held in Israeli custody since the attack.
The occupied territories have witnessed a fresh bout of tensions ever since Israeli forces introduced restrictions against the entry of Palestinian worshipers into the al-Aqsa Mosque compound in East Jerusalem al-Quds in August 2015.
Palestinians say Tel Aviv seeks to change the status quo of the site, which is Islam’s third holiest site after Masjid al-Haram in Mecca and Masjid al-Nabawi in Medina in Saudi Arabia.
More than 220 Palestinians have lost their lives at the hands of Israeli forces in the tensions since the beginning of last October.