BETHLEHEM, March 28, 2016 (WAFA) – Israeli authorities Monday demolished and destroyed a home, a farm, electric wires, a water network, trees, and razed a tract of land at the northern entrance to Bethlehem, in southern West Bank, according to local sources.
Khader Jarashi, owner of the demolished structures, told WAFA that some 50 Israeli military vehicles accompanied by bulldozers broke into the northern entrance of Bethlehem, before they demolished his own house, in addition to a poultry farm, a playground, electric wires and a water network.
The area where the structures were demolished is located in Area C of the occupied West Bank, under complete Israeli occupation control, have no choice but to build without permits to be able to provide a shelter for their families, risking demolition of their residential structures by Israeli authorities.
According to the UN monitoring group OCHA, from February 23 to March 7, 2016 Israel destroyed or dismantled 85 structures in Area C and East Jerusalem for lack of Israeli-issued building permits, including 17 structures provided as humanitarian assistance, displacing 96 Palestinians, including 41 children, and affecting 255 others.
According to OCHA statistics, the number of structures demolished since the start of 2016 is already 70 percent of the demolitions recorded in all of 2015, while the number of people displaced is nearly 68 percent of the total 2015 figure.
Statistics also indicate that the number of donor-funded structures demolished (120) has already exceeded the 2015 total (108).
Israel has severely curtailed Palestinians’ ability to legally construct new houses or expand existing houses in East Jerusalem and West Bank Area C, denying them permits since 1967 and prompting them to embark on construction without obtaining construction permits.