55 forced eviction orders in Ras Khamis – Shu’fat refugee camp

55 forced eviction orders in Ras Khamis – Shu’fat refugee camp
On March 3rd, 2009, the Israeli municipality of occupied Jerusalem issued notifications on the forced evacuation and demolition of 55 housing units in which more than 500 people live, of whom 350 children.  The units are located in Ras Khamis area near Shu’fat refugee camp north of the old city.

(Copy of one of the notification stuck at a door)
The Israeli notifications were stuck at the doors of the 55 units by the inspection personnel at the occupation municipality guarded by the Israeli army. The target units are located in 8 residential buildings owned by the extended families of Subhi, Mohammed Ali, Fathi, Isa, Ghaiyth, Jahalin, Baraka and Juwelis.  The total surface area of these buildings is 650 M2. The vast majority of residents are refugees who were dismissed out of their homes  and properties in west Jerusalem during war of 1948.
( Photo 1 & Photo 2: Ras Khamis homes threatened with demolition
surrounded by the path of the Segregation Wall)
Forced eviction
According to LRC field researcher the forced eviction campaign against the houses and citizens of Ras Khamis began last January when administrative demolition orders were issued against the residential buildings of Mr. Emran Ghaith and Nabil Ghaith where 5 housing units were destroyed. In the last week of December, 2008, more demolition orders were handed over in the same area.
(Photo 3: a protest tent set up by Ras Khamis citizens)
The newly affected families have levied cases at the Jerusalem magistrates court courts in an attempt to stop the demolition orders which clearly violates  the Palestinian basic rights to adequate housing and land possession in their city guaranteed by international agreements and conventions.
Origins of Shu’fat refugee camp’s community
The Shu’fat refugee camp was established by the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestinian refugees immediately after the War of 1948 over one square kilometer area to host the first wave of Palestinian refugees during the war of 1948 obliged to leave their homes and properties in the western suburbs and villages of Jerusalem. At the end of 1967, another wave of refugees arrived at the camp after they were dismissed out of their homes inside the Moroccan ( Al Sharaf) quarter of the old city to make room for the construction of the western wall plaza and the Jewish quarter.  More than 200 homes and two mosques were destroyed and 600 citizens kicked out as part of this process. Nowadays, the total population of the camp and its surroundings is about 40,000, including 10,000 in Dahiyat as Salam to the east of the camp and 10,000 in Ras Khamis neighborhood to the south west of the camp.
Separation of the camp
 Two years ago the Israeli occupation authorities completed the Wall construction works around the camp totally separated it from the city of Jerusalem. As a result, and although 99% of inhabitants hold the Jerusalem ID they aren’t considered  any more as Jerusalem citizens or even residents, hence, losing all their residency rights in the city.
Judaization of the city
Since the occupation of the eastern part of the city of Jerusalem in 1967 the Israeli authorities have continued with their plans to Judaize the city by either changing its demographic balance or deforming its Arab Islamic and Christian character. According to LRC figures, between 86 to 88% of the land in Jerusalem have been confiscated and became under direct Israelicontrol, 900 Palestinian homes were demolished during the years from 2000 to 2008 under the pretext of un-licensing after the Israeli authorities made it quite impossible for Palestinians to get any building permissions inside  the city.


Categories: Military Orders