An Israeli occupation bulldozer demolish a Palestinian owned house in the occupied East Jerusalem, Aug. 21, 2019 (Photo credit: Reuters)
Israel continues its expansion into the occupied West Bank and East Jerusalem, having demolished at least 47 Palestinian structures in the past two weeks, according to the UN.
According to the report published on 16 September, the Israeli occupation army has demolished or confiscated at least 47 Palestinian structures for not having Israeli permits between 30 August and 12 September.
Israeli authorities issue permits to Palestinians in the occupied areas rarely, despite extremely overcrowded living conditions.
In addition, Israel often forces Palestinians to destroy the building themselves, or pay for the demolishing and removal costs.
According to the report published by the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) in the occupied Palestinian territory, Israel demolished 9 buildings in East Jerusalem and the remaining structures in the occupied West Bank, including 19 that were taken from people without warning, or prior notice.
The demolition of Palestinian structures increased exponentially over the past weeks and months.
At the start of 2022, Israel seized two buildings every two weeks, the number has now increased to 47, and in June the occupation army seized more than 96 buildings in total.
Israel has further expanded its territory since the 1967 Arab-Israeli war and has built settlements in the occupied West Bank and East Jerusalem for more than 700,000 settlers, in clear violation of international law.
Israel’s occupation of East Jerusalem is not recognized by most countries and is considered one of the biggest obstacles to peace, as Palestinians consider east Jerusalem the capital of their future state.
The permit regime for Palestinians is considered by many as PR move by the Israeli occupation, but the systematic discrimination against Palestinians makes it nearly impossible to receive one.
“For Israel, the settlements serve two related purposes. One is to guarantee that the occupied territory will remain under Israeli control in perpetuity. The second purpose is to ensure that there will never be a genuine Palestinian state,” the UN Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in the Palestinian Territory occupied since 1967, Michael Lynk, told the Human Rights Council in Geneva on 9 July 2021.