House Demolition in East Jerusalem during the month of August

House Demolition  in East Jerusalem during the month of August

Israeli occupation forces is feverishly continuing to enlarge settelments in Jerusalem such as Neve Leitob, Ras Al Amoud, Gilo, Givat Ze'ev among others. In the meantime, the different apparatuses of the Israeli occupation continued to execute the policy of Palestinian house demolition in Jerusalem during the month of August 2004. The number of demolished housing units during this month reached 16 with a total surface area of 2700 m2 in which about 100 Palestinians used to live, 50% of whom are children. Add to this demolition campaign, the Jewish Municipality of occupied Jerusalem, along with the Israeli Ministry of Interior, have issued tens of demolition orders, especially in the areas of Sur Baher, Al Tour, Silwan, Beit Hanina and Shu'afat.


The Land Research Center has documented the following cases of house demolitions and evictions during the afore-mentioned month:

  • Two houses belonging to Mr. Hayyel Rashad Sanduqa and his children in Al Ashqariya neighborhood in Beit Hanina on August 9, 2004. The first house is a three-apartment under-construction, in addition to cistern and wall with a total surface area of 770 m2. These apartments were planned to house 11 families who are the sons and daughters of Mr. Sanduqa numbering 31 individuals 18 of whom are children. These families were building their future homes while living in eight rented apartments constituting a large financial burden on the shoulders of their bread earners. As such, the heads of these families decided to buy a piece of land to build on it their dream homes. Alas, this dream was aborted at its inception by the occupation authorities which deprived these residents from even applying for the court system to appeal the demolition order.   

  • Again on August 9, 2004 at about 8:30 AM three Israeli D9s bulldozers demolished the house of Mr. Omar Mohammad Ali in the area of Ras Shehada  in Shu'afat. The surface area of the house was 900m2 and it formed the ground floor for a three-storey hospital. Moreover, the huge Israeli forces accompanying the demolition squads arrested a number of youth protesting the demolition operation, one of whom was Mr. Hani Al Kilani.

  • Again on August 9, 2004 the occupation authorities represented in the municipality of occupied Jerusalem demolished a two-room building with a surface area of 80m2. The building was located at the southern part of Wadi Qadum neighborhood in Silwan and is owned by Mr. Hani Ali Hasan Soror. The rooms were built to be used as a resting place associated by the gas station owned by Mr. Soror which was itself demolished on December 10, 2003.

  • On August 17, 2004 the occupation authorities demolished a two-apartment building in Ashqariya neighborhood in Shu'afat belonging to Ziyad and Fayez Mohammad Shehada. The demolition took place despite the fact that the two brothers have filed a building application in the Municipality. Mr. Ziyad emphasized that the Local Committee has approved the plans of the building after it satisfied all necessary legal conditions set by the Municipality. The owners of the building were not present at the time the demolition took place. Their neighbors called them once they saw the machinery of the Municipality, yet they came when it was too late.

  • On August 17, 2004 the brothers Na'im and Nader Ahmad Ghaith told LRC's field worker the following:  'Tens of Israeli occupation forces blocked the roads leading to our two-apartment house in which 18 individuals lived. The invading forces used trained police dogs to force our families out as they refused to so as to protect the house. Foreign workers brought by the demolishing contractor threw the furniture out and demolished the house atop the remaining stuff. The demolishing came about despite the fact that the lawyer hired by the brothers managed to get a court order to stop the demolishing who, in turn, told the representative of the Municipality to delay the operation for few minutes until the court order arrives. Yet, the representative refused to wait those few minutes and gave the order to start the demolishing. Only a few minutes passed before the court order arrived yet the Municipality engineer rendered the building to be a source of danger for the public that the total demolishing shall be completed. And so it was..'  

  • The family of Mr. Isam Ahmad Husein Abu Kaf told LRC's field worker the following: ' At about 7:00 AM on August 30, 2004 Israeli Special forces and Border Police accompanied by police dogs blocked the area of Al Za'kooka in Sur Baher. They forcefully removed the members of the family who initially refused to move out of the house. At the same time, Thai workers removed the furniture as soldiers started beating the members of the family as well as some of the neighbors using the butts of their machine guns and sticks. A number of us were transferred to the hospitals to receive medical treatment'.

Those injured included the following:  

1.     Mr. Yousef Khader Omeira, 50 years old, after a soldier hit him on the head which required 3 stitches.

2.     Mrs. Rateba Fawaqa who was attacked by members of the Special Forces. One of the attackers hit her severely on her knee and left her unconscious. She was transferred to a local clinic and to the hospital afterwards.

3.     Mrs. Iman Abu Kaf, a mother of a number of children including a 9-month old baby. She was the lady of the house and was beaten randomly and was left unconscious.

4.     Mr. Nayef Abu Kaf who was beaten randomly and left unconscious, too.

5.     Mr. Mohammad Ahmad Attoun, 65 years old, who was beaten mercilessly by members of the Special Forces as he was pushed against an iron gate.

6.     Mr. Yaqoub Afana who was severely beaten by a number of soldiers.

7.     Mr. Mahmoud Mustafa who was brutally beaten to the degree that one of the soldiers broke his stick while beating Mr. Mustafa.

8.     Mr. Ahmad Mustafa Ameera. He was attacked by 20 soldiers causing burses to the head and required a number of stitches.

9.     Mr. Husein Abu Kaf who received similar treatment from the soldiers.


It is worth mentioning that the village of Sur Bahir – Umm Tuba has witnessed a violent campaign (shootings, teargas, stick beatings) in a campaign to demolish 12 houses on April 2, 2004.

House demolition in Jerusalem under the pretext of un- licensing by name of owner, date of demolition, location, area, number of housing units and rooms and number of family members and children


Table 1: Houses demolished  in East Jerusalem during the month of August, 2004.



Name of owner

Dem. Date


Area M2

No. of housing units

No. of family members



Hayyel Rashad Sanduqa


Ashqariya- Beit Hanina


4 (24 rooms)


Two floor building, a cistern & wall- unfinished


Ommer Mohammed Ali


Ras Shehada- Shu'fat




Hospital's basement under construction


Hani Ali Soror


Wadi Qadum- Silwan


1 ( 2 rooms)


Associated to already demolished  gas station


Amjad Mohammed Ar Ru'ud


Wadi Ad Dam- beit Hanina


2 (14 rooms)


Second floor- Unfinished


Ziad Mohammed Shehada


Ashqariya- Beit Hanina


1 ( 4 rooms)




Faiz Mohammed Shehada




1 (4 rooms)




Na'im Ahmad Ghaith


Ashqariya- Beit Hanina


1 ( 6 rooms)




Nader Ahmad Ghaith


Bit Hanina


1 (6 rooms)




Isam Ahmad Abu Kaf


Sur Baher


1 (5 rooms)






 (65 rooms)






Picture 1: Beit Hanina- Jerusalem
Photo courtesy of LRC

Picture 2: Shu'fat- Jerusalem:
Photo courtesy of LRC






Prepared by
The Land Research Center



Categories: Demolition