Jerusalem April 19, 2015 (WAFA) – Israeli staff from the West Jerusalem Municipality accompanied by Israeli police units Sunday notified two Palestinian families of orders to demolish their homes to the East of Jerusalem.
WAFA correspondent reported that the municipality staff raided the two homes late Saturday, and handed over orders to evict the contents of their homes in preparation for the demolition Sunday morning under the pretext of building without a permit.
Issuance of construction permits for Palestinians living in Area C, under full Israeli administrative and military control, is strictly limited, forcing Palestinians residing in such areas to embark on construction without obtaining a permit to provide a shelter for themselves and their families, risking in the process having their homes demolished.
According to the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA), between December 30, 2014 and January 12, 2015, the Israeli authorities demolished 27 Palestinian structures in Area C of the West Bank and five in East Jerusalem, in addition to two self demolition incidents, due to lack of Israeli-issued building permits.
The Palestinian Central Bureau of Statistics (PCBS) affirmed that the Israeli authorities do not only demolish Palestinian homes, but also hinder the issuance of any building licenses for Palestinians in Jerusalem and its boundaries.
Al-Maqdisi Institute reported that between the years 2000 and 2014, the Israeli authorities demolished around 1,342 buildings in East Jerusalem (the areas annexed by Israel in 1967), which has resulted in the displacement of approximately 5,760 people.
Data also showed an increase in the cases of residents being forced to demolish their own houses: 340 people were forced to demolish their own homes during the period 2000-2014; the highest rate of self-demolition was recorded in 2010 with 70 demolitions and 49 in 2009.
Many families are forced to demolish their homes with their own hands to avoid the high cost of paying for Israeli government bulldozers.