JERUSALEM, Saturday, September 17, 2022 (WAFA) - The Israeli occupation authorities demolished, confiscated, or forced people to demolish 44 Palestinian-owned structures in East Jerusalem and Area C of the West Bank, citing the lack of Israeli-issued building permits. As a result, 29 people, including 10 children, were displaced, and the livelihoods of about 140 others were affected, according to the biweekly Protection of Civilians report covering the period between 30 August and 12 September published by the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) in the occupied Palestinian territory.
Some 35 of the structures were in Area C, including 19 structures seized without warning, which prevented the ability of owners to object in advance, it said. This represents a significant increase in such seizures compared with the biweekly average since the beginning of the year (four).
Nine other structures were demolished in East Jerusalem, including five that were destroyed by their owners following the issuance of demolition orders, to avoid paying fines when the structure is demolished by Israeli authorities.
Also on 6 September, Israeli authorities demolished an uninhabited residential apartment in a multistory building in Jenin city, in Area A, on punitive grounds. The home belonged to the family of a Palestinian man who shot and killed three Israelis in Israel in April 2022 and who was subsequently killed.
Another two homes sustained damage from the explosion, affecting two Palestinian households comprising 12 people, including eight children.
OCHA said that since the beginning of this year, 11 homes have been demolished on punitive grounds, compared with three in all of 2021 and seven in 2020. “Punitive demolitions are a form of collective punishment, which is illegal under international law, as they target the families of a perpetrator, or alleged perpetrator, who are not involved in the alleged act,” it stressed.
Also during the two-week reporting period, the Israeli army shot and killed seven Palestinians in different incidents in the West Bank, and injured a total of 315 Palestinians, including at least 37 children.
The OCHA report said that on two consecutive days, Israeli forces conducted military training exercises near the 13 Palestinian herding communities of Masafer Yatta in southern Hebron designated as a ‘firing zone’, thus restricting the access of Palestinians to basic services, and risking their safety.
Additionally, on several occasions since the start of the school year, Israeli authorities have disrupted the access of teachers and students to school in Masafer Yatta, where four schools operate, through fixed and flying checkpoints. All schools in the area are at risk of demolition by Israeli authorities.
Also during the reporting period, OCHA said that the Israeli occupation forces also restricted the movement of Palestinians in various locations across the West Bank.
Meanwhile, during the two weeks, Israeli settlers injured 21 Palestinians and damaged Palestinian property in 27 instances.