Israel demolishes or seizes 26 Palestinian structures in only two weeks: UN

Bethlehem/PNN/

Israel demolished or seized 26 structures belonging to Palestinians in the occupied West Bank and East Jerusalem only two weeks, the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) says.

In its “Protection of Civilians Report,” which is covering the period between 2 and 15 March, the office said, “the Israeli authorities demolished or seized 26 Palestinian-owned structures in Area C and East Jerusalem (al-Quds), displacing 42 people, of whom 24 were children, and otherwise affecting about 120.”

“Seventeen of the structures, and all of the displaced people, were recorded in Area C” of the West Bank, whose management of resources, planning, and construction is under the full control of Israel.

Area C accounts for more than 60 percent of the West Bank and forms a significant part of a future Palestine state under the so-called two-state solution.

According to the OCHA, the demolitions were carried out under the pretext of the lack of construction permits.

The UN office added that a vegetable stall near the city of Qalqiliya was demolished, affecting the livelihood of 20 people, while 16 were affected by the demolition of two uninhabited houses and the confiscation of one metal container in Isteih in the province of Ariha (Jericho).

According to the report, authorities forced the owners of two of the nine structures targeted in East Jerusalem to demolish their property.

The so-called construction permit is nearly impossible to obtain.

Israeli authorities sometimes order Palestinian owners to demolish their own homes or pay the demolition costs to the municipality if they do not.

All Israeli settlements are illegal under international law.

Palestinians want the West Bank as part of a future independent Palestinian state with East Jerusalem as its capital.

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