JERUSALEM, November 5, 2016 (WAFA) – Israel’s destruction and confiscation of items provided by international donors as humanitarian assistance to the Palestinian people were up by 150 percent since the beginning of this year, a United Nations agency said on Thursday.
It is bi-weekly report on the Protection of Civilians covering the period between 18 and 31 October, the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) in the occupied Palestinian territories said the Israeli authorities demolished or confiscated 18 structures in six Palestinian communities in East Jerusalem and Area C, displacing 54 people, including 29 children and affecting the livelihoods of more than 46 others.
It said eight of the targeted structures, including residential shelters, latrines and a water cistern, had been provided as humanitarian assistance in response to previous demolitions.
“This brings the total number of assistance items destroyed or confiscated since the beginning of 2016 to 273, up more than 150 percent compared to all of 2015,” said OCHA.
Palestinians are forced to build without permit in Jerusalem and the Israeli-controlled Area C, which amounts to more than 60 percent of the total area of the West Bank, due to lack of Israeli-issued building permits in these areas.
In addition to the destruction of shelters, OCHA also cited the damage Israeli forces and the Israel Antiquities Authority had done to a Muslim cemetery near the Old City of Jerusalem on grounds of being used to build gravestones without permits.
Israeli forces also conducted 196 search and arrest operations and arrested 234 Palestinians in the West Bank, it said.
The Jerusalem governorate accounted for the highest portion of arrests (97) and operations (56), including the raiding of a secondary boy’s school in East Jerusalem.
Also, in Jerusalem, the Israeli police banned 15 Palestinians from entering the Al Aqsa Mosque for periods ranging between three months and two weeks.