Israel demolishes 2 homes in East Jerusalem, displacing Palestinian family of 9

BETHLEHEM (Ma’an) — Israeli authorities raided the SIlwan neighborhood of occupied East Jerusalem on Tuesday, where bulldozers demolished two Palestinian homes under the pretext that they were built without a permit.
 

Locals told Ma’an that Israeli bulldozer escorted by armed forces raided and surrounded the neighborhood, closing all roads to the area before forcing residents of the two homes to evacuate prior to the demolition.

The homes belonged to Murad Abu Rajab and his son Raed. Raed told Ma’an that the two homes were built 14 months ago, and that their was a valid court decision postponing the demolition.

He added that he informed the officer in charge of Tuesday’s demolition of the postponement, but the Jerusalem Municipality crews carried out the demolition anyways.

Raed  said that nine family members lived in the two homes.

 
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According to official Palestinian Authority (PA) Wafa news agency, two other homes also slated for demolition in Silwan and the East Jerusalem neighborhood of al-Issawiya were allegedly “spared at the last minute,” after the homeowners presented Israeli court orders that temporarily prevented the demolitions.
A spokesperson from Israel’s Jerusalem municipality was not immediately available for comment. The UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) in the occupied Palestinian territory said on their Twitter that a home demolition had been reported in Silwan Tuesday morning.
Israel rarely grants Palestinians permits to build in East Jerusalem, though the Jerusalem municipality has claimed that compared to the Jewish population, they receive a disproportionately low number of permit applications from Palestinian communities, which also see high approval ratings.
For Jewish Israelis in occupied East Jerusalem’s illegal settlements, the planning, marketing, development, and infrastructure are funded and executed by the Israeli government. By contrast, in Palestinian neighborhoods, all the burden falls on individual families to contend with a lengthy permit application that can last several years and cost tens of thousands of dollars.
According to Daniel Seidemann of the NGO Terrestrial Jerusalem, “Since 1967, the Government of Israel has directly engaged in the construction of 55,000 units for Israelis in East Jerusalem; in contrast, fewer than 600 units have been built for Palestinians in East Jerusalem, the last of which were built 40 years ago. So much for (Jerusalem Mayor Nir) Barkat’s claim ‘we build for everyone.’”

According to United Nations documentation, 202 Palestinians were displaced and 116 buildings have been demolished in East Jerusalem since the beginning of the year as of Oct. 9. Israeli demolitions of Palestinian homes in the occupied West Bank and East Jerusalem reached a record high in 2016.

(Source / 17.10.2017)

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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. http://www.haaretz.com/israel-news/1.802141

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