JERUSALEM, May 16, 2016 (WAFA) – Israeli forces on Monday early morning dismantled 12 Palestinian-owned caravans in Jabal al-Baba neighborhood, near the town of al-Ezariya to the east of Jerusalem, according to local sources.
Witnesses told WAFA that Israeli troops and illegal settlers broke into the site at about 5:00 am, before they proceeded to dismantle the 12 caravans, under the pretext of construction without permission.
The caravans had been set up with European Union funding, and were home to about 90 Palestinians, mostly children.
The neighborhood is located in Area C of the West Bank, under complete Israeli military control. Israel rarely issues construction permits to Palestinians in area C, forcing many to embark on construction without obtaining a permit.
Area C covers 60% of the West Bank, which was temporarily divided into three parts – A, B and C – under the 1995 Interim Agreement on the West Bank and the Gaza Strip, signed by Israel and the Palestinian Liberation Organization (PLO).
Today nearly 300,000 Palestinians live in Area C, while nearly 360,000 Jewish settlers live in 135 settlements and 100 settlement outposts, which are illegal under international law.
According to a report by the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA), between 1988 and 2014, Israel’s Civil Administration, the governing body that operates in the West Bank, issued 14,000 demolition orders, of which more than 11,000 are still outstanding and could result in the demolition of up to 13,000 structures owned by Palestinians in Area C, including houses, sheds and animal shelters.