Israeli authorities have been intensifying their attacks on Palestinian activities and institutions in occupied East Jerusalem, reported Al-Monitor, citing a number of recent incidents.
On 5 August, Israeli forces prevented a memorial service for the Palestinian writer Subhi Ghosheh from taking place at the Yabous Cultural Centre, assaulting participants and summoning a number for interrogation.
The next day, Israeli forces stopped a ceremony from being held in honour of the late athlete Ahmad Adilah at The East Jerusalem YMCA, while on 17 August, a lecture on the Israeli demolition of Jerusalemite homes at the Burj Luqluq Social Centre Society was also shutdown.
According to the report, these actions are a result of Minister of Internal Security Gilad Ardan’s 5 August order “to extend the closure of Palestinian institutions in the city and prohibit any cultural or political activities held by Palestinian organisations”.
“The decision deems such events terror activities that violate Israeli sovereignty and laws in the city”, Al-Monitor added.
Ziad al-Hammouri, director of the Jerusalem Centre for Social and Economic Rights, himself interrogated on 8 August, said such steps were “a prelude to the enactment of an Israeli law that sentences any Jerusalemite with ties to the PA [Palestinian Authority] to up to three years in prison in an effort to clamp down on Jerusalemites”.
Adnan al-Husseini, a member of the PLO Executive Committee in charge of Jerusalem affairs, told Al-Monitor “that the Israeli harassment and actions in East Jerusalem are becoming more severe in the wake of the Jerusalem-related US decisions”.
He added that “the US decisions on Jerusalem serve as a green light for Israel to further encroach upon the rights of Palestinians”, encouraging “Israel to make many racist decisions, expand its settlement activities, demolish houses and close institutions”.