Governments and organisations across the world have condemned Israel’s demolition of Palestinian homes in occupied East Jerusalem. On 22 July, Israeli occupation forces reportedly razed 16 Palestinian buildings which contained 100 apartments. The UN described the move by Israel as “not compatible with its obligations under international humanitarian law”.
“Halt the ongoing demolitions”
The EU and UN have denounced Israel’s actions. A spokesperson for the EU pointed out that most of the buildings are in an area supposedly under Palestinian control:
The majority of the buildings are located in Area A and B of the West Bank where, according to the Oslo Accords, all civil issues are under the jurisdiction of the Palestinian Authority.
They went further, stating that Israel’s policies of settlement, land confiscation, and house demolitions are “illegal under international law”. And given this:
In line with the EU’s long-standing position, we expect the Israeli authorities to immediately halt the ongoing demolitions.
UN representatives also criticised Israel. In a joint statement, they declared that Israel was “forcing families out of their homes, and causing great distress among residents”. And they said:
Israel’s policy of destroying Palestinian property is not compatible with its obligations under international humanitarian law. Among other things, the destruction of private property in occupied territory is only permissible where rendered absolutely necessary for military operations, which is not applicable.
Governments and politicians across the world have also condemned Israel’s actions. Simon Coveney, the Irish minister of foreign affairs, said “I strongly condemn this morning’s demolitions”. He went on to insist that Israel is ignoring its “obligations under International Law”. And he asserted that its policies are “destroying the livelihoods” of the Palestinian people.
The Bahraini foreign ministry called the demolitions “illegal acts” that are in “violation of the rights of the brotherly Palestinian people”. And it demanded that the world’s governments pressure Israel to “prevent them from continuing to carry out such unacceptable actions”. Jordan also attacked Israel’s behaviour. Its foreign ministry called on Israel to:
cease immediately these practices, which deepen despair and increase tension, and have a fundamental impact on the two-state solution.
And the French government pointed out that the destruction of Palestinian homes happened:
for the first time in an area controlled by the Palestinian authority under the Oslo Accords.
As a result, it asserted that this “represent[s] a dangerous precedent”.
The Israeli government has sought to justify the demolitions by saying it tore down the buildings because the Palestinian residents built them illegally. It also argued that they were too close to the West Bank ‘separation barrier’.
Residents say they have nowhere to build and that getting permits from the occupier to build homes legally is impossible.
Featured image via Flickr – michael loadenthal
We need your help to keep speaking the truth
Every story that you have come to us with; each injustice you have asked us to investigate; every campaign we have fought; each of your unheard voices we amplified; we do this for you. We are making a difference on your behalf.
Our fight is your fight. You’ve supported our collective struggle every time you gave us a like; and every time you shared our work across social media. Now we need you to support us with a monthly donation.
We have published nearly 2,000 articles and over 50 films in 2021. And we want to do this and more in 2022 but we don’t have enough money to go on at this pace. So, if you value our work and want us to continue then please join us and be part of The Canary family.
In return, you get:
* Advert free reading experience
* Quarterly group video call with the Editor-in-Chief
* Behind the scenes monthly e-newsletter
* 20% discount in our shop
Almost all of our spending goes to the people who make The Canary’s content. So your contribution directly supports our writers and enables us to continue to do what we do: speaking truth, powered by you. We have weathered many attempts to shut us down and silence our vital opposition to an increasingly fascist government and right-wing mainstream media.
With your help we can continue:
* Holding political and state power to account
* Advocating for the people the system marginalises
* Being a media outlet that upholds the highest standards
* Campaigning on the issues others won’t
* Putting your lives central to everything we do
We are a drop of truth in an ocean of deceit. But we can’t do this without your support. So please, can you help us continue the fight?