Israel Demolishes Structures near Jerusalem for Lack of Permits

JERUSALEM, June 9, 2015 (WAFA) – The Israeli authorities demolished three Palestinian-owned structures on Tuesday in the village of Jib, northwest of Jerusalem, citing construction without a permit as a pretext, according to local and security sources.

WAFA correspondent said Israeli police accompanied by heavy machinery broke into the village in the early morning and proceeded to demolish the three structures, which included a metal workshop and car repair workshops.

Head of the Jib village council, Ismail Abu Rabah, told WAFA that the demolished metal shop was the only source of living for more than 20 Palestinians.

He said the owner of the metal workshop incurred more than 50,000 shekels during the recent four years (about $13,000) in attempts to have a construction permit of the workshop issued, but all efforts went in vain.

As for the car repair workshop, Abu Rabah said it was first demolished five months ago before its owner rebuilt it in a desperate attempt to continue providing income for his family.

Issuance of construction permits for Palestinian businesses in the village has been frozen for 30 years, which forces many Palestinians living in the area to build premises without obtaining the needed permit, Abu Rabah added.

Like other areas located within Area C, under full Israeli jurisdiction, issuance of construction permits for Palestinians is strictly limited, forcing Palestinians residing in such areas to embark on construction without obtaining a permit.

According to statistics obtained by the Israeli Committee against House Demolitions (ICAHD), Israel has demolished more than 48,000 Palestinian-owned houses since 1976, either for allegedly administrative purposes or during military action.

In 2014 alone, the ICAHD observed the demolition of 399 houses for ‘administrative’ reasons, whereas more than 18 thousand houses were bombed and devastated during the military onslaught on Gaza.