1,000 forces prepare to empty Hebron market, Amona

Israel is mobilizing over 1,000 police and soldiers to forcibly remove Jewish settlers from two unauthorized West Bank outposts, military officials said Thursday. The evacuations from Hebron and the outpost of Amona are expected by the beginning of February, the officials said on condition of anonymity, since they were not authorized to speak to the press. Eight families have taken over buildings in an empty Palestinian market in Hebron. Amona, which is north of Jerusalem, contains several permanent structures where dozens of settlers live. Settlers have pledged to strongly resist the dismantling of Amona and have appealed to the Supreme Court in an effort to prevent it. Israel committed in 2003 to remove all settler outposts in the West Bank in accordance with the internationally-backed "road map" plan that outlines a return to peace talks with the Palestinians.