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More than 11,000 demolition orders pending in West Bank

There are more than 11,000 currently outstanding demolition orders issued by Israeli authorities against Palestinian-owned properties in the Occupied West Bank, according to new figures.

The official data, as presented by UN OCHA in a recent report, shows that Israeli authorities issued 14,087 demolition orders in ‘Area C’ of the West Bank between 1988 and 2014, on the basis that they lacked the required permit.

The number of affected structures is higher, however, as some orders target several structures.

According to the figures, some 20 percent of these orders have been implemented, and just one per cent cancelled, leaving a total of 11,134 outstanding.

Some 60 percent of the Occupied West Bank is designated as ‘Area C’, where Palestinians require building permits from Israel. There are around 300,000 Palestinians living in Area C, alongside approximately 341,000 Israelis living in illegal settlements and settlement outposts.

Israel has long made it almost impossible for Palestinians in Area C to obtain the required permits for construction, even as settlements expand.

Of the outstanding demolition orders, 570 are described by the Israeli authorities as “ready for execution.” Most of the orders are concentrated in the Hebron governorate (3,669) orders, then Jerusalem (1,756), Ramallah (1,173) and Bethlehem governorates (1,145).

UN OCHA notes that there is also “a correlation between the distribution of the orders and the location of main roads in Area C: the closer a structure is to a main road, the higher the possibility of it receiving a demolition order.”

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