Palestinian homes due to be demolished over ‘lack of permits’ pretext in Deir Ballut Village

Palestinian homes due to be demolished over ‘lack of permits’ pretext in Deir Ballut Village
On the 11th of September 2010, the Israeli Civil administration distributed 8 halt of construction orders to citizens of Deir Ballut village southwest of Salfit city under the pretext of unlicensed building. The orders were delivered to Abdel Ghafer Jubara Husni Mustafa, Abdel Wahab Muhammad Abdullah, Idris Jubra Abdullah, Khaled Ahmad Abu Khair, Najeh Daoud Hussein Abdullah, Abdullah Mahmoud Abu Khair, Jaber Ahmad Mahmoud Abdullah and Abdel Wahab Husni Isssa Musa. The demolition orders received by residents of Deir Ballut village state that the existing structures were built in violation of the fourth chapter of the Israeli City, Village, and Building Planning Law no. 79 of 1966 which was amended after the 1967 war by the Israeli Occupation Authorities on the basis of Military order No. 418 to comply with Israel’s interests and settlement plans in the occupied Palestinian territory. Residents of Deir Ballut village were given until the 7th of October 2010 from the issuance date of military orders to object the orders and start with licensing procedures. It is worth mentioning that proceeding with License procedure doesn’t guarantee Deir Ballut citizens the license for their structured as stated in the military order.

Previous Halt of Construction Orders in Deir Ballut Village:-
This isn’t the first time that the Israeli Civil Administration targets Deir Ballut village, but rather, on June 27, 2007, Palestinian residents in Deir Ballut received halt of construction notifications to stop the construction on seven houses in the village. The pretext used there is no other than ‘building without a license.’ The owners, who received military notifications were: Suleiman Mohammad Ibrahim ‘Abed Allah (140 m2), Suleiman ‘Abed Al Hammed ‘Abed Allah (50 m2), Mohammad Ibrahim ‘Abed Al Razeq (100 m2), Zoohriya ‘Abed ‘Abed Al Razeq (140 m2), Sa’ed Deeb Salem Kheir ( 140 m2), Haytham ‘Ali ‘Abed Al Rahman ‘Abed Allah (120 m 2) and Hekmat Hussein ‘Ali ‘Abed Allah (140 m2).  To read full report, click here
On June 4th, 2008, the Israeli Civil Administration again handed owners of three commercial and agricultural structures in Deir Ballut village southwest of Salfit governorate halt of construction notifications under the pretext that they were built without proper licensing documents. The notifications were issued by the planning and construction department at the Israeli civil administration. Table 1 gives more details of the notified Palestinian owners in Deir Ballut village
Table 1: Threatened Palestinian Structures in Deir Ballut Village
Owner’s name
Raghib Sa’id Abdul Fattah
A commercial store
Khadija Yusif Abdullah
Wall around her newly established agricultural farm
Abdullah Odeh Abdullah
Plastic water tank
45 M3
Source: Land Research Center, 2008 

Map 1: Targeted Palestinian Houses in Deir Ballut Village
Later on the 15th of June 2009, the Israeli occupation Army handed twelve Palestinian families from Deir Ballut village military orders notifying them that their houses will be demolished under the pretext of lacking building permits. The owners of the 12 Palestinian houses are listed in table 2 below:
Table 2: Threatened Palestinian houses in Deir Ballut village
No OwnerName Military OrderNumber Status ofStructure
Abdullah Mahmud Mohammad Abu Khair.
143979 Under Construction
Hatem Abdullah Mahmud Abu Khair.
143978 Under Construction
Mufid Mahfouz Salem Abu Khair
143984 Under Construction
Abed Odeh Abdullah 143986 300 square meters area
Amna Theib salem Khair 143980 Under Construction (80 square meters area)
Ahmad Mohammad Ahmad Dar Mousa
143973 100 square meters area
Suleiman Abdel Hamid Abdullah.
143975 Under Construction (180 square meters area)
 Saleh Hussein Saleh.
300 square meters area (inhabited by 4 family members)
Kahalil Mahmud Mohammad Abdullah
143976 Under Construction (100 square meters area)
Idris Jubbara Abdullah.
143977 Under Construction (250 square meters area)
Najeh Daoud Abdullah.
Under Construction (150 square meters area(
Zaeid ‘Ali Abdel Halim Abdullah
NA Under Construction
Source: Deir Ballut Municipality, 2009

Map 2location of the threatened Palestinian houses

Not only have the houses of Deir Ballut village been targeted by Israel but also the lands of the village are being confiscated for the construction of the Israeli Segregation wall. The planned route of the Israeli Segregation wall will completely enclose the villages of Deir Ballut, Az Zawiya, and Rafat in one enclave and will cut them off not only from Israel but also from their own agricultural lands, their livelihood and the neighboring Palestinian communities. It is worth mentioning that the three villages are totally dependent on their agricultural land for economic survival. If Wall constructions proceed as planned, the three villages will have their lands confiscated and will be surrounded by the Wall from all directions.
To Conclude
The demolition of Palestinian homes and seizure of Palestinian lands to construct the Segregation Wall is explicitly outlawed by the Hague Conventions of 1907. Convention IV, Article 23 (G) clearly states that the occupying power is forbidden ‘to destroy or seize the enemy’s property, unless such destruction or seizure be imperatively demanded by the necessities of war.’
Also Article 53 of the Fourth Geneva Convention stresses that Israel is prohibited from demolishing Palestinian houses by stating: ‘Any destruction by the Occupying Power of real or personal property belonging individually or collectively to private persons, or to the State, or to other public authorities, or to social or cooperative organizations, is prohibited, except where such destruction is rendered absolutely necessary by military operations.
Under the same convention, particularly Article 147: ‘extensive destruction and appropriation of property, not justified by military necessity and carried out unlawfully and wantonly’ is a grave breach of the Convention’.
Moreover, the International Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination (1965) Article 5 provides that: ‘States’ Parties undertake to prohibit and eliminate racial discrimination in all of its forms and to guarantee the right of everyone, without distinction as to race, color, or national or ethnic origin, to equality before the law, notably in the enjoyment of the following rights: (e) in particular … (iii) the right to housing’.

[1]  Amendment to Law No. 79 of 1966: In Year 1971, the Israeli Occupation authorities ‘amended’ Law number 79 of 1996 in accordance with Israeli Military Order number 418, under which all significant decisions on permits and plans would be made by a High Planning Council appointed by the Military Commander. MO 418 also allowed the High Planning Council to prepare, amend, cancel, disregard, or dispense any plan or permit; it also had the authority to exempt persons from obtaining the necessary license. Most members of the High Planning Council have been military officers and all have been Israeli citizens. The amendment to this law has advanced the establishment of new settlements and the expansion of existing ones while it prohibited the natural development of the Palestinian community simply by rejecting permits and demolishing Palestinian houses under the pretext of building without proper building authorization.

Categories: Military Orders