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ISRAELI FORCES DEMOLISH PALESTINIAN BUILDING IN EAST JERUSALEM

beit-hanina-oost-jeruzalem

JERUSALEM (Ma’an) — Israeli authorities demolished a Palestinian-owned building that was under construction in the occupied East Jerusalem neighborhood of Beit Hanina on Tuesday, a spokesperson for Israel’s Jerusalem municipality confirmed.

 
Witnesses told Ma’an on Tuesday morning that Israeli police officers stormed the building as police vehicles and bulldozers surrounded it, and later Monday afternoon, Jerusalem municipality spokesperson Rachel Greenspan confirmed to Ma’an in a written statement that court orders to dismantle the structure had been “enforced.”
 
She said the building was constructed on land designated for a new road planned by the municipality. “Cease and desist orders issued in 2015 were ignored, and owners continued to construct an additional four floors on the illegal structure,” Greenspan said.
 
Earlier Tuesday morning, Israeli forces in the occupied West Bank also demolished Palestinian structures in the northern Jordan Valley in two separate incidents.
 
Israeli authorities have stepped up issuing demolition warrants for Palestinians in East Jerusalem, particularly after Jerusalem Mayor Nir Barakat warned that the demolition of the illegal Israeli outpost of Amona in the occupied West Bank would be met with the mass demolition of Palestinian homes lacking the nearly impossible to obtain Israeli-issued building permits.
 
Amona was evacuated and dismantled by an Israeli Supreme Court order last week.
 
In January, two Palestinian homes were demolished in Beit Hanina, and more than 100 Palestinian homes have been destroyed in the occupied Palestinian territory since the beginning of the year, including 14 in occupied East Jerusalem.
 
Meanwhile, Netanyahu has also pledged to lift all restrictions on settlement construction in occupied East Jerusalem, while more than 6,000 housing units have been approved for construction in both East Jerusalem and the West Bank since the beginning of 2017.
 
Furthermore, Israel’s parliament, the Knesset, passed into law the contested outpost “Regularization bill” late Monday night, granting official Israeli governmental recognition to more than a dozen illegal settlement outposts in the occupied West Bank established on private Palestinian lands.
 
In addition to land seizures and home demolitions, the crackdown on Palestinian Jerusalemites has also seen the escalation of violent night raids by Israeli police, carried out in breach of protocol and without proper search warrants.
 
During a predawn detention raid Monday that targeted the families of Palestinians who were either slain or incarcerated after carrying out or allegedly carrying out attacks, one family’s testimony described violent assaults by masked police officers.
 
The fate of Jerusalem has been a focal point of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict for decades, with numerous tensions arising over Israeli threats regarding the status of non-Jewish religious sites in the city, and the “Judaization” of East Jerusalem through settlement construction and mass demolitions of Palestinian homes.
 
(Source / 07.02.2017)

Tags: ICC4Israel

Video of the Week New Clashes Erupt Between Israeli Security Forces, Muslim Worshippers

Temple Mount temporarily closed to Jewish visitors after clashes with police




The Temple Mount was temporarily closed to Jewish visitors on Wednesday at the order of Jerusalem District Commander Yoram Halevy after Jews broke visitation rules at the holy site, police said. The Jewish visitors were expelled from the compound for bringing sacred books to the Mount and trying to pray there. After one of the individuals was cautioned, another took out a holy book, and the group was expelled. Meanwhile, renewed clashes erupted between protesters and Israeli security forces near the Lion's Gate in the Old City, where police used stun grenades against the demonstrators. A regular dynamic has developed involving clashes between Palestinians and Israel Police over the past several days near the Lion's Gate. Dozens of Palestinians are present at the site on a regular basis, urging devotion to the Al-Aqsa Mosque on the Temple Mount and condemning Israel. During Muslim prayer times, particularly the midday and nighttime prayers, hundreds and sometimes even thousands have been gathering there.

There have been outbreaks of violence during these periods, including stone-throwing or physical confrontations with the police. In most of these incidents, the police have been using stun grenades and sponge-tipped bullets to disperse the crowds. In a number of cases, journalists in the area have also suffered violence at the hands of the police. On Tuesday, Hassan Shaalan, a reporter for the Ynet news website, was struck by a policeman even after he identified himself as a member of the press. A group of Jerusalem-based journalists released a statement of condemnation over the incident and called on the police to permit reporters to do their jobs. The Jerusalem Police responded: "This involved an incident that took place in the course of violent disturbances of the peace that occurred in Jerusalem while the police were acting to remove the demonstrators from the street after some of them refused to vacate. The forces working on the scene are under constant threat to their lives.

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