Palestinian residents of occupied Jerusalem’s Sheikh Jarrah neighbourhood protested today against the prison sentences demanded for those who defended their homes against illegal settlers in May last year, Wafa has reported.
The protest took place in front of the Israeli District Court. Protesters carried placards condemning the unjust sentences demanded by the Israeli prosecution.
One resident taking part in the protest said that her 19-year-old son, Bilal Jabari, was detained in custody a year ago for standing up to the settlers who attacked the homes in Sheikh Jarrah. He could be facing an eight-year sentence.
Last year, the threat of eviction for Palestinians in Sheikh Jarrah sparked weeks of violence, culminating in Israel’s brutal 11-day military assault on the Gaza Strip, which killed 230 Palestinians, including 65 children. Palestinian attorneys have been working for years to ensure that Sheikh Jarrah residents are not thrown out of their homes. Nevertheless, the residents of the neighbourhood live with the constant threat of forced eviction and the demolition of their homes. They also face continuous provocation by Jewish settlers.
All Israeli settlements and settlers are illegal under international law. The UN Security Council has condemned Israel’s settlement activities in the occupied territories in several resolutions. On 28 September, UN Special Coordinator for the Middle East Peace Process Tor Wennesland told the UN Security Council that “we see little progress” in the implementation of a 2016 UN Resolution calling for an immediate end to the building of illegal settlements in the occupied Palestinian territories.