JERUSALEM, Friday, May 7, 2021 (WAFA) – Israeli police Friday overnight violently cracked down on Palestinians resisting forceful eviction and dispossession in the Jerusalem neighborhood of Sheikh Jarrah, according to local sources and WAFA correspondent.
They said that a sizable Israeli police forced its way into the neighborhood for the third consecutive night as Palestinians and solidarity activists gathered to break their Ramadan fasting in solidarity with 40 Palestinians, including 10 children, who face the imminent risk of being kicked out from their homes in the neighborhood to replace them with an entirely Jewish settlers.
Police, some mounted on horses, attempted to violently disperse the protestors, firing tear gas, stun grenades and skunk water towards them.
They cordoned off the neighborhood in an attempt to prevent residents from other Jerusalem neighborhoods from accessing it, beat up a number of protestors with batons and detained at least six others, including Secretary-General of Fatah Shadi Mtour.
Policemen stormed a house in the neighborhood and severely beat up his owner, inflicting bruises across his body, and detained a number of Palestinians inside. The casualty was rushed to a hospital for treatment.
As Palestinians gathered to demonstrate against the forceful eviction of dozens of residents, Israeli settlers, including Itamar Ben-Gvir, a lawmaker and an extreme follower of Meir Kahane, the late founder of the violent extremist Jewish Defense League who advocated the mass ethnic cleansing of Palestinians, arrived at the scene, aggravating the situation.
Ben-Gvir set up a makeshift office across the street from the Iftar meal as other settlers, who in the last few days chanted racist slogans, such as “Death to Arabs” and called for all Palestinians to be kicked out of the neighborhood, pepper-sprayed at the Iftar table.
Meanwhile, an armed settler opened fire toward a group of Palestinians in the neighborhood. No injuries were reported though.
Another settler attacked a Palestinian youth who was on his way from his workplace to his house near the neighborhood using a sharp object, wounding him.The casualty was rushed to a hospital for urgent treatment.
Palestinians are expected to proceed with their protests throughout the week and into the next as they attempt to save their neighborhood.
The Israeli Supreme Court, which could be liable for war crimes its policies supporting the dispossession and forcible transfer of Palestinians, a war crime under international law, postponed a ruling on the case to next Monday, which happens to also be Israel's Jerusalem Day, celebrating the occupation of East Jerusalem following the 1967 war.
The Palestinian families reiterated that they rejected any deal with the settlers, considering that it would amount to a recognition of the validity of their demands.
Since Israel occupied East Jerusalem in the 1967 war, Israeli colonial settler organisations have claimed ownership of the land in Sheikh Jarrah and have filed multiple lawsuits to evict Palestinians from the neighbourhood since 1972.
Since the start of last year, Israeli courts have ordered the eviction of 13 Palestinian families in Sheikh Jarrah, located less than a kilometer away from the walls of the Old City of Jerusalem.