The High Court of Justice delayed by possibly a month any movement on the pending eviction of four Palestinian families from the east Jerusalem neighborhood of Sheikh Jarrah.
The postponement came after the Palestinian families filed a request demanding that Attorney-General Avichai Mandelblit weigh in on the case. It could take Mandelblit anywhere from two weeks to a month
The postponement came after the Palestinian families filed a request demanding that Attorney-General Avichai Mandelblit weigh in on the case.
Until now, the case was only between the Palestinian families and Nahalat Shimon company, which is wants to develop parts of the neighborhood for Jewish housing.
Mandelblit's office rejected any characterization that he was delaying the case moving forward.
Rather, his office said that he had not been involved in the case and would need a couple of weeks to get up to speed to respond about whether he thought his office should even get involved at this point.
In past similar cases, a major one dating back to 2015, when prior attorney-generals got involved, they tended to take middle of the road positions which would avoid a need for the Palestinian families to be evicted.
Two lower court had upheld the Nahalat Shimon company's ownership claim to the land, but the Palestinians had appealed to the HCJ, which had been due to decide Monday on whether to accept the appeal.
The property dispute is seen as a test case for some 28 Palestinian families in the neighborhood, who fled ares now located within sovereign Israel during the 1948 War of Independence, such as west Jerusalem, Jaffa and Haifa.
They relocated to east Jerusalem, which at the time was under Jordanian rule. Through a deal that included the United Nations, Jordan offered them homes on land previously owned by Jews if they would give up their refugee status.
But their property rights were never registered and two organizations retained their ownership rights, which has since been transferred to Nahalat Shimon.