Ethnic Cleansing In Jerusalem
The Israeli Occupation’s Municipality of Jerusalem Evicts 9 Palestinian Families from their Houses In Al Sheikh Jarrah Neighborhood

Ethnic Cleansing In Jerusalem <br> The Israeli Occupation’s Municipality of Jerusalem Evicts 9 Palestinian Families from their Houses In Al Sheikh Jarrah Neighborhood


Ethnic cleansing, this really describes the Israeli occupation actions against the Palestinians in Al Sheikh Jarrah, at the occupied East Jerusalem neighborhood that had been subjected to intimidations, threats, and now effective cleansing of their houses simply because they are Palestinians and nothing remotely similar happens to illegal Israeli settlers living in the occupied Palestinian territory. What happened in Al Sheikh Jarrah is a sample of what is taking place across the occupied Palestinian territory. At the time the Israeli settlers whose very existence in the occupied territory stand in violation of the international law continue to build , expand the settlements and now attack and assume the Israeli Army's role  against Palestinians; the international community has nothing to say except few shy words about this. What happened in Al Sheikh Jarrah comes within the sequence of the Israeli adopted measures against Palestinians, specifically in occupied East Jerusalem since 1967. Another fact to consider, which became official now is that the Israeli settlers are taking matters into their own hands. They have been doing so for decades but the Israeli consecutive governments always tried to avoid making this fact official but apparently now the Israeli settlers have surpassed any attempt by the government to cover it. 

Early morning of August 2, 2009, the Israeli occupation Municipality of Jerusalem led a force of Israeli police raided the residents of Hannoun and Ghawi families  and forcibly evicted 9 families from 6 houses in Al Sheikh Jarrah neighborhood in occupied East Jerusalem where they have been living since 1956.

Immediately after the eviction, a group of Israeli settlers, protected by the Israeli Army and the Israeli Police entered the 6 Palestinian houses and seized the belongings of the 9 Palestinian families loaded them on trucks and drove away.During the Israeli aggression at least 2 Palestinian people have been injured, 13 arrested including 11 International volunteers.

Both Hannoun and Ghawi families have been subject to several Israeli attempts to kick them out from their houses since the year 1972, where an Israeli extreme right settlement organization called Il’ad which works to settle Jews in occupied East Jerusalem, claimed their ownership of the 6 Palestinian houses. See Photo 1

Photo 1: The house of Maher Hanoun in Ash Sheikh Jarrah Neighborhood in Jerusalem city


Mr. Maher Hannoun and Mr. Nasser Ghawi indicated that they have been living in their houses since the year 1956 according to an agreement between the Jordanian Government and the UNRWA, and the documents submitted by the aforementioned settlement organization unfounded and forgery.

Moreover, Mr. Ghawi and Hannoun added that the Israeli court ruled to evacuate them from their houses since the year 2002 until the year 2006, when the court decided to allow them back and to live in their houses. In February 2008, the Israeli Il’ad organization submitted an unidentified  documents to the Israeli supreme court based on which, the court ordered the owners of the six Palestinian families to evacuate their houses, and the Israeli police notified the families that they have to evacuate from their houses before August 10, 2009, otherwise they will be forcibly evacuated and that what happened in the early morning of August 2, 2009.

Furthermore, the Israeli settlement organization (Il’ad) wasted no time and confidante that the ruling will be in their favor, submitted a plan to the Israeli municipality of Jerusalem to build 250 Israeli housing units for the Israeli settlers on the ruins of 28 Palestinian houses including the 6 houses of Ghawi and Hannoun families in Al Sheikh Jarrah neighborhood. See Map 1

To Conclude

 Israel, as an occupation power should abide by the international humanitarian law including: The Hague Regulations and the Forth Geneva Convention of 1949. The eviction of the Palestinian families of Ghawi and Hannoun from Al Sheikh Jarrah neighborhood is a grave violation of these rights and covenants and considered an ethnic cleansing. Israel should be held accountable for its acts in occupied East Jerusalem and the Palestinian Territory, and made to comply with the international legitimacy, laws treaties and United Nations' resolutions.

  • Article 147 of the Fourth Geneva Convention indicated that: Extensive destruction and appropriation of property not justified by military necessity and carried out unlawfully and wantonly. Is a grave breach of the Convention.

  • Art. 23 of the Hague Convention of 1907 also provides: In addition to the prohibitions provided by special Conventions, it is especially forbidden to destroy or seize the enemy's property, unless such destruction or seizure be imperatively demanded by the necessities of war;

  • Under the Universal Declaration of Human Rights Adopted and proclaimed by General Assembly resolution 217 A (III) of, December 10, 1948, Article 17 reads: 'No one shall be arbitrarily deprived of his property.' Which means it bans Israel from destroying or confiscating the property of the Palestinians at any case.

  • Article 53 & 147 of the Fourth Geneva Convention considers 'extensive destruction and appropriate of property, not justified by military necessity and carried out unlawfully and wantonly' as a grave breach of the Convention and thus constitute a war crime.

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Prepared by:
The Applied Research Institute – Jerusalem