sheikh jarrah jewish house 311.
(photo credit: Ariel Jerozolimski)
A new Jewish housing complex in the east Jerusalem neighborhood of Sheikh Jarrah
received initial approval from a Jerusalem municipality committee on
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If the proposal passes the Interior Ministry’s District Planning
and Building Committee, the two separate properties will have 13 or 14 apartment
units. It generally takes properties anywhere from three to 10 years from the
time a project is approved by the municipality committee until construction
World leaders did not condemn the proposal on Monday, as they
have with most other announcements of construction approvals in east Jerusalem.
The Prime Minister’s Office also said it had not yet received queries about the
One source said that Prime Minister Binyamin
Netanyahu had made his position on matters like these clear – and that just as
Arabs can buy property in predominantly Jewish neighborhoods in Jerusalem, so
Jews should be able to buy property in predominantly Arab neighborhoods in the
“The government does not get involved in this,” the official
The private properties in Sheikh Jarrah were purchased by a group
of Israeli and foreign investors, and are represented by right-wing activist
“Our goal is to see the Nahalat Shimon and Shimon
Hatzadik neighborhoods as one large unit,” Silberstein told The Jerusalem Post,
referring to the names of the Jewish neighborhoods in Sheikh Jarrah prior to
“We aim to build hundreds of units, to connect them with the
western part of the city,” he said.
Many of the houses were originally
owned by Jewish families, who left the area when it was controlled by the
Jordanians between 1948 and 1967.
The plan passed, as expected, with only
one opposing vote – from Meretz’s Pepe Alalu, who heads the
“All these projects connected with settlers get the green
light,” he told the Post on Monday.
“Many times the arguments have been
about Gilo, Pisgat Ze’ev or Ramat Shlomo, which everyone knows will be part of
the Jewish capital, but this is an Arab neighborhood,” he said, adding that
according to accepted consensus, in a finalstatus agreement, Jewish areas would
remain with Israel, and Arab neighborhoods would become part of
Hagit Ofran of Peace Now called the project a “provocation,”
warning that it was the first of many similar announcements.
“It’s not a
secret that all the plans in Sheikh Jarrah are meant to create a corridor and
connect the dots between west Jerusalem and Mount Scopus to cut through Sheikh
Jarrah,” she said.
The plan calls for the demolition of two existing
structures on Dahlmann and Kundar streets. The Kundar property will have 10
apartments in a six-story building, and the Dahlmann property will have three or
four. An Arab family is currently living in the building on Dahlmann
Twenty-three members of the Sa’ao family live in the building,
according to Sheikh Jarrah resident Nasser Ghawi, who was evicted from his home
in August 2009. “[Jerusalem Mayor Nir Barkat] is encouraging hate in Jerusalem,”
Ghawi said, accusing the mayor of approving plans for Jewish construction
Silberstein said the investors were currently involved in a court
case in the Jerusalem Magistrate’s Court to evict the Sa’ao family members, who
he said have been squatting illegally in the structure.
demonstrators from the Sheikh Jarrah Solidarity Movement came to protest the
meeting on Monday morning with drums and megaphones. They chanted for about an
hour in Kikar Safra, and then attempted to march down Jaffa Road. One protester
was arrested and two were taken for investigation, after police asked the
demonstrators to disband when they left Kikar Safra. All of the demonstrators
were later released.Herb Keinon contributed to this report.