Timeline: Gaza pullout

The Israeli government's disengagement plan involves the evacuation of all 21 Jewish settlements in the Gaza Strip and another four in the West Bank.

    Palestinians will take over the settlements in October

    On 14 August, the period of voluntary evacuation expired and entrance to settlements was forbidden. The army ordered remaining settlers to leave their homes.

    These are the events that remain in the evacuation:

    16 August: The grace period of "assisted evacuation" expires at midnight. After that deadline, settlers have no say in the way they are evacuated.

    17 August: In the morning, a police officer knocks on the doors of homes of the remaining settlers and orders them to board a bus that will take them to Israel proper. The army will take charge of packing their belongings but will limit each household to two containers.

    Reluctant settlers will be forcibly evacuated by teams of unarmed police and soldiers, backed by armed security. The Israeli authorities have not said in what order they will evacuate the settlements.

    September: In the first week, the Israeli army is expected to dismantle the four northern West Bank settlements of Ganim, Homesh, Kadim and Sanur.

    In the second week of the month, the Israeli army is expected to start demolishing all the empty homes and buildings in the Gaza Strip.

    The army is also to begin completing its own withdrawal from the territory, recalling all soldiers and dismantling military bases.

    October: Palestinian security forces, who already assisted the evacuation operation, are expected to officially take over security responsibility for the former settlements at an unspecified date.

    SOURCE: AFP


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