Israel Notifies Palestinians of Home Demolition Orders in Jerusalem

JERUSALEM, December 14, 2014 (WAFA) – The Israeli authorities Sunday notified Palestinians of orders to demolish their homes in the Jerusalem neighborhood of Silwan, according to local sources.

Witnesses told WAFA that Israeli police, accompanied by a staff from the Israeli municipality of West Jerusalem, broke into the area and handed notices to local residents regarding the municipality’s plan to demolish their homes, under the pretext of building without a permit.

Issuance of construction permits for Palestinian residents of East Jerusalem, occupied since 1967, has been restricted. The authorities rarely issue such permits, forcing the majority of the city’s residents to build houses to seek shelter without a permit.

The authorities also impose unreasonable fees in case a permit is issued, for which Jerusalemites tend to evade red tape pertaining to permission procedures.

Since 2004, Israel has demolished hundreds of houses on unpermitted construction grounds, reportsB’Tselem.

Unlike Jewish migrants who enjoy a variety of legal rights and unlimited facilities with regard to construction, indigenous Palestinian residents of the city always find themselves compelled to demolish their homes upon Israeli notice and seek a house rental instead.

Thousands of Jerusalemites have also been forced to leave the city to flee the Israeli restrictions.