Israel Continues to Destroy Palestinian Homes in Jerusalem

Jerusalem, MINA – Human Rights Group recorded Israeli authorities have destroyed at least 140 Palestinian homes in East Jerusalem occupied this year. It is the highest number since 2014.

The non-profit organization, B’Tselem said that 238 Palestinians had lost their homes due to demolition this year, including 127 underage children. The second-highest amount of demolition occurred in 2016 with 92 houses destroyed.

Sometimes, owners choose to demolish their own homes to avoid the high costs imposed by Israeli authorities. From the 140 units that were demolished this year, 31 were dismantled by their owners.

The group said commercial buildings were also destroyed at the highest level with 76 units demolished this year, compared to 2018 with only 70 buildings.

B’Tselem said that the houses were destroyed because they were built without the permission of local government. However, the condition occurred because of discriminatory permits by the Israeli government, forcing a large number of Palestinians to illegally build dwellings.

The amount of demolition revealed by B’Tselem only included houses that were demolished because they were built illegally. They do not include those destroyed as part of Israeli practice of destroying the homes of suspected perpetrators after attacks that killed Israelis.

Israel said the move was deterring violence, while Palestinians saw it as a form of collective punishment. For example, the Israeli military destroyed buildings partially built in a refugee camp, West Bank city on Thursday, October 24.

Israeli forces claim the destruction was done because of the home of a Palestinian family who killed an Israeli officer during the operation on May 2018. In fact, the original residence was destroyed in December of that year, however, the forces returned after seeing new construction in progress. (T/Sj/P2)

Mi’raj News Agency (MINA)