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Israel demolishes 3 Palestinian homes near Jerusalem despite European outcry

February 28, 2024 at 4:15 pm

Israeli forces demolish a building in Jerusalem on January 3, 2024 [Mostafa Alkharouf/Anadolu Agency]

Israeli forces demolished three Palestinian homes near Occupied East Jerusalem on Wednesday, despite European outcry, Anadolu Agency reports.

Israeli forces raided Al-Walaja, south of East Jerusalem, and razed the three houses on the pretext of lacking building permits, municipal chief, Hadir Al-Araj, told Anadolu.

“Israel is doing everything to toughen conditions for the Palestinians to displace them from their lands,” he added.

The demolitions came one day after diplomatic missions of numerous EU members in Jerusalem and Ramallah slammed ongoing Israeli demolitions in the West Bank.

According to Al-Araj, Israeli forces have demolished eight Palestinian houses in the West Bank since Tel Aviv launched its war on the Gaza Strip on 7 October.

Palestinians and Israeli rights groups accuse Israeli municipal authorities of denying building permits to Palestinians, while allowing the construction of Jewish-only settlements in the West Bank.

Israel occupied East Jerusalem during the 1967 Arab-Israeli War. It annexed the entire city in 1980 in a move never recognised by the international community.

The Palestinians insist on East Jerusalem as the capital of their hoped-for State, based on international legal resolutions.

Tensions have been running high across the Occupied West Bank since Israel launched a deadly military offensive against the Gaza Strip following a 7 October Hamas attack.

More than 400 Palestinians have since been killed and 4,500 others injured by Israeli army fire and in settler attacks in the Occupied Territory, according to the Health Ministry.

Israel stands accused of genocide at the International Court of Justice over its deadly onslaught on the Gaza Strip, which has left nearly 30,000 people dead.

In an interim ruling in January, the Hague-based court ordered Tel Aviv to stop genocidal acts and take measures to guarantee that humanitarian assistance is provided to civilians in Gaza.

READ: Former Israel Premier accuses Netanyahu of ‘purging’ West Bank of Palestinians