The European Union Representative issues the following statement in agreement with the EU Heads of Mission in Jerusalem and Ramallah.
On 29 June, Israeli authorities demolished one Palestinian shop in Bustan, a neighbourhood in Silwan/East Jerusalem. Several buildings in the neighbourhood have recently been receiving new demolition orders. Currently 20 houses are at imminent risk of demolition, while in Bustan more than 1000 Palestinians are facing the threat of having their homes demolished. Meanwhile in the neighbouring Batan al Hawa 86 families are in various stages of eviction proceedings spearheaded by an Israeli settler organisation.
Moreover, on 2 August the Israeli Supreme Court is expected to announce whether it will allow the appeal request by four of the total 28 families at risk of eviction from their homes in Sheikh Jarrah following court proceedings by a settler organisation in Sheikh Jarrah.
Israeli domestic laws, creating the basis for the claims to evict the families, do not exempt Israel, as the occupying power, from meeting its obligations to administer the occupied territory in a manner that provides for and protects the local population.
Israel’s settlement policy is illegal under international law. Unilateral actions taken in that context, such as forced transfers, evictions, demolitions and confiscations of homes will only escalate an already tense environment and lead to further violence and human suffering. The Israeli authorities should immediately cease these activities and provide adequate permits for legal construction and development of Palestinian communities.
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