Xinhua: Israeli authorities demolish residential building in Jerusalem

Today (Tuesday), Israeli authorities demolished a residential building belonging to a Palestinian family in East Jerusalem amid Palestinian condemnation and accusations that Israel is trying to empty the city in favor of expanding the settlement.

Palestinian sources told Xinhua that Israeli vehicles demolished the building, which consists of five two-story apartments in the town of Silwan, south of Al-Aqsa Mosque, which houses 35 members of the Rajabi family. , including women and children.

The sources added that the Israeli police forcibly dispersed the occupants of the building, which led to a fistfight, at a time when journalists were banned from attending the demolition process and prevented under the pretext that they were without ‘ built a permit.

The Palestinian Red Crescent Society in Jerusalem reported that its teams sustained 5 injuries as a result of the beatings by Israeli police at the scene, one of them a female journalist.

Demolition of an apartment building in Jerusalem

The owners of the building, who were driven away to a hill of sand overlooking it, screamed and screamed, while the women’s eyes shed tears over the loss of their memories they had lived in the building for the past few years.

Im Muhammad Al-Rajbi, seventy, says while observing the first moments of the demolition, to reporters that the building was built 8 years ago, with years of effort and effort, to be demolished within minutes, and does calls on the Arab countries and the international community to stop the Israeli “crimes” against the people of Jerusalem.

Near her stands her 45-year-old son, Zuhair, with tears in his eyes and says: “Five families, including children and women,’s building is demolished within moments and they are left without shelter in the street … is the Israeli occupation and the systematic policies within Jerusalem. “

Zuhair added that the family had repeatedly applied for a building permit, but was refused by the Jerusalem municipality and noted that the family was tied up without doing anything in light of the imposition of a security cordon around the building.

The dream of the young woman, Rebiya, who was preparing for her wedding in the coming days, was shattered by leaving her father’s house with her white dress, after she lost it under the rubble of the building.

Israeli authorities regularly carry out demolitions of what they consider to be unauthorized buildings and houses in Jerusalem and the West Bank, noting that Israel has refrained from issuing building permits or permits to Palestinians in areas under its control.

The Jerusalem municipality imposes “impossible” conditions to allow Palestinians to build and levies excessive tax fees for it, forcing residents of the holy city to build without permission due to their need for shelter and housing, according to Palestinian officials. taken that the Israeli conditions aim to reduce the size of the Palestinian presence in the city.

40% of homes are at risk of demolition

Fakhry Abu Diab, a member of the Silwan Town Lands Defense Committee, told Xinhua that more than 40 percent of the houses in Silwan Town were threatened with demolition, and its residents had not obtained a single permit for 10 years.

Abu Diab added that Silwan residents had submitted more than 13,000 applications for licenses, all of which were rejected while settlers seized land and houses and built without a permit.

In turn, the Palestinian presidential office’s adviser, Ahmed Al-Ruwaidi, told Xinhua that the Al-Rajbi family building is one of 22,000 buildings threatened with demolition in the city of Jerusalem, more than 600 of them within the next 6 months, warning of an Israeli “massacre” committed with the purpose of forced displacement of the population.

Al-Ruwaidi stated that the Palestinian side is working on two tracks to confront the policy of demolition through the legal dimension before the Israeli courts, and political action with the consuls of the countries working in Jerusalem, including the United Nations and the European Union , where they are informed about the picture of what is happening.

Al-Ruwaidi criticized the International Criminal Court’s delay in opening an investigation into Israeli “crimes,” as did other files around the world.

Palestinian Authority Minister for Jerusalem Affairs Fadi al-Hadmi, for his part, said the holy city was under “Israeli” attack by demolishing houses and trying a new reality in the Al-Aqsa Mosque. enforce and torture the residents in an attempt to end the Palestinian presence in the city.

Protection of civilians

In the statement, Al-Hidami called on the international community, especially the US administration, to align itself with international humanitarian law and international conventions on the protection of civilians and to press Israel to stop its one-sided practices in Jerusalem. .

In the same context, the Palestinian Authority’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Exiles saw the demolition of the building as a “war crime and a crime against humanity” and as part of the ethnic cleansing operations carried out by the Israeli authorities against the residents of Jerusalem. committed with the purpose. to deport them and forcibly relocate them from their city.

In a statement, the ministry held the Israeli government fully and directly responsible for the “crime”, taking into account the Al-Rajbi family and its construction on a victim of Israel and “the double international standards and the failure of the UN Security Council to accept it. legal and moral responsibilities. “

The statement called on the countries of the world to impose “sanctions” against Israel to force it to stop its continued aggression against international law and international legitimacy and its resolutions, and to force it to submit to the international will for peace.

The Palestinians want to declare East Jerusalem, which includes Al-Aqsa Mosque, the capital of their future state, while Israel insists on considering united Jerusalem as its capital.

It is noteworthy that this article was quoted by the Chinese Xinhua news agency under an agreement to share content with the newspaper Al Mal.

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