8th February 2016 | International Solidarity Movement, al-Quds team | Jerusalem, occupied Palestine
Israeli authorities on 2nd February 2016 issued a demolition order for the fence and gate surrounding the Amro family’s home in Wadi al-Joz in occupied East Jerusalem. The family was given 48 hours to remove the fence and gate before an imminent demolition.
The house is home to Nureddin and Sharif Amro, two blind brothers living with their elderly mother, their wives and their seven children, all of whom have lived in this house for their whole lives. A part of the home was demolished on March 31, 2015 when Jerusalem municipal authorities and police surrounded the house at 5:30 am, locked the Amros in one room, and demolished part of the house around them and much of the yard, trees and the wall that protected them from the busy street. During this demolition, Israeli forces attacked Nureddin’s brother as well as his children and wife, and buried their belongings in the demolished rooms under rubble. This demolition was completely illegal even under Israeli law, as the family never received a demolition order.
All the Palestinian homes in the neighbourhood adjacent to the old city in Wadi al-Joz are under threat of demolition by Israeli authorities as the land has been zoned by the municipality as a national park. Israeli authorities have long used this strategy of land zoning and confiscation across occupied East Jerusalem in their campaign of ethnic cleansing against Palestinians, while continuing to promote settlement building, which is illegal in the occupied territory including East Jerusalem under article 49 of the 4th Geneva convention.
This demolition order comes at a time when Israeli forces are stepping up demolitions of Palestinian homes, leaving many families homeless. The Amro family’s only hope now is that the Israeli courts will actually consider their appeal against the demolition of the fence.
Read an interview with Nureddin Amro about the house demolition: http://thisweekinpalestine.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/01/February-214-2016.pdf (page 24 f.)
Nureddin’s article about his home demolition in The Washington Post: https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/israel-wrecked-my-home-now-it-wants-my-land/2015/07/31/79808fca-36cf-11e5-9d0f-7865a67390ee_story.html?tid=pm_opinions_pop_b
Report on demolition of the Amro family house in March 2015: http://palsolidarity.org/2015/04/home-demolition-in-jerusalem-they-want-our-land-we-need-help-to-protect-it/