Jerusalem Municipality orders demolition of 14 illegal Arab homes

Order follows High Court’s Amona ruling; Move would displace 40 families.

November 17, 2016 04:16
1 minute read.
Beit Hanina

Palestinians take part in Friday prayers in East Jerusalem's Beit Hanina neighbourhood. (photo credit: REUTERS)

Following the High Court’s ruling on Amona, the Jerusalem Municipality has approved the immediate implementation of demolition orders for 14 residential Arab structures in east Jerusalem’s Beit Hanina neighborhood.

It was ruled they were illegally built on private Jewish land.

The order comes after Jerusalem Mayor Nir Barkat warned that a ruling in favor of Arab claimants against the West Bank settlement would have far-reaching consequences for Arab residents of east Jerusalem.

According to Channel 2, Barkat approved the demolitions, which have been delayed by the court for years, before receiving final legal advice from Attorney- General Avichai Mandelblit.

The 14 residential structures in question house approximately 40 Arab families.

Barkat issued a statement Wednesday night reiterating that the municipality is “committed to acting according to the rule of law for Jews and Arabs. Following the High Court’s ruling on Amona, the Jerusalem Municipality’s legal adviser requested that the court carry out immediate execution of judicial demolition orders for 14 illegal buildings sitting on private land managed by the administrator-general of the State of Israel. The application comprises a demand to cancel the delayed execution of demolition orders in plots managed by the administrator- general of the state, and empower the local committee to carry out the demolition.”

Barkat said the Amona ruling clears the way for carrying out hundreds of similar regulations against Arab residents living in illegal east Jerusalem homes.

“Our hands are now tied, and [the ruling] had to reach Jerusalem,” the statement continued. “There is not one law for Jews and another law for Arabs.”

It is estimated that there are hundreds of Arab families living in illegally built homes on Jewish land in east Jerusalem.

However, only a fraction of the proposed demolition orders have been issued to date by the municipality.

“Now, following the High Court’s ruling in the case of Amona, the Jerusalem Municipality will be required to carry out the demolition orders issued by the said courts,” the statement concluded.

At press time, it remains unclear when the homes will be subject to demolition.

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