JERUSALEM, Friday, July 2, 2021 (WAFA) – Israeli settlers Friday overnight took over a building in the East Jerusalem town of Silwan, according to local information center.
Wadi Hilweh Information Center (SILWANIC) said that dozens of settlers, under the protection of special forces, barged their way into and used a lorry to block access to Wadi Hilweh neighborhood, before they seized an empty building.
It added that the identity of owner was not ascertained, as the ownership of the building, which covers 160 square meters, was transferred among several families in recent years, and other families rented it in the last seven years
Several hours earlier, some 20 settlers stormed the same neighborhood and were distributed to several colonial outposts established at the expense of the Palestinians there.
The takeover of the building marks the establishment of the first colonial outpost in al-Fakhouri courtyard of Wadi Hilweh.
While the Israeli occupation municipality refuses to allow Palestinians to build or restore their buildings in Silwan, settlers often are able to re-construct the buildings they take over and expand them with consent from the Israeli municipality of West Jerusalem.
Currently hundreds of Palestinian-owned houses in different areas of Silwan, but mainly in Batn al-Hawa, Wadi Hilweh, and al-Bustan areas, are under threat of demolition by the Israeli municipality for construction without permit.
However, Palestinians believe the demolition orders are part of a large-scale Israeli ethnic cleansing scheme intended to empty Silwan of its Palestinian residents to eventually inhabit it with Israeli settlers and turn it into what it calls the City of David.