By Maher Abukhater
10:24 PM PST, January 12, 2013
JERUSALEM -- Palestinian activists were evicted Sunday from a tent village they had set up Friday on a large plot of land east of Jerusalem that Israel has designated as the site of a new settlement.
Israeli police raided the site known as E-1 after the Israeli government told the Supreme Court that evacuating the activists was a top national security matter. The court Friday had delayed eviction proceedings, giving the government six days to explain why it would want to remove the protesters.
Activists said the police carried the approximately 100 activists from the site, and then allowed them to return home. Police also removed 25 tents from the area. There were no injuries or arrests.
Israel plans to build thousands of housing units as part of the E-1 project, which Palestinians and much of the international community have condemned as a step that could disrupt travel between the northern and southern portions of the West Bank and make it more difficult for the Palestinians to create a cohesive state.
Israel has said it may be many years before the project actually breaks ground.
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