Ever since a Palestinian driver crashed his automobile Might 16 right into a police roadblock and injured various Israeli policemen, the Israeli forces have locked down the Sheikh Jarrah neighborhood, the place 28 households face the danger of eviction and compelled displacement, by erecting concrete obstacles on all sides of the neighborhood. They’ve been stopping overseas and Palestinian activists exhibiting solidarity with residents from getting into the neighborhood, permitting solely the residents to enter and exit the neighborhood based mostly on their id playing cards.
The neighborhood of Sheikh Jarrah is positioned on the japanese aspect of Jerusalem’s Previous Metropolis and was constructed outdoors the partitions of town. In 1956, 28 Palestinian refugee households who had been displaced in 1948 had been accommodated within the neighborhood underneath an settlement signed between the United Nations Reduction and Works Company for Palestine Refugees within the Close to East (UNRWA) and the Jordanian authorities.
The neighborhood is estimated to stretch over 808 dunams (20 acres), its inhabitants is estimated at roughly 2,800, and it’s run by the Israeli municipality in Jerusalem.
Sheikh Jarrah has at all times been a recurrent flashpoint within the Palestinian-Israeli battle. A number of Palestinian households had been expelled from that neighborhood in 1948. In 1972, Jewish associations claimed that they possessed paperwork of possession of the lands on which the neighborhood homes had been constructed. Based on the Ashkenazi and Sephardic Jewish committees, these paperwork date again to the late nineteenth century.
The case has just lately returned to the headlines following the Jerusalem District Court docket Might 2 ruling that gave various Palestinian households till August to vacate their properties.
Ziyad al-Hammouri, director of the Jerusalem Middle for Social and Financial Rights, advised Al-Monitor, “The Israeli occupation forces’ besieging of Sheikh Jarrah neighborhood — which has grow to be an icon of Jerusalem — is a critical step that appears similar to what occurred in al-Shuhada Avenue in Hebron. In 1994, the occupation had prohibited Palestinians from accessing Hebron within the wake of the Ibrahimi Mosque bloodbath. Residents of the [Sheikh Jarrah] neighborhood are being inspected, their identities scrutinized, whereas journalists are being attacked for protecting the developments on the bottom and exposing Israeli practices to the world.”
He mentioned, “Jerusalem earlier than the month of Ramadan was not a high precedence for the world. The occupation had settled the neighborhood’s standing [by seeking to expel Palestinians from it] after former US President Donald Trump acknowledged Jerusalem in 2017 as Israel’s capital. However the in style rebellion in Sheikh Jarrah and Bab al-Amud [Damascus Gate] has restored curiosity within the challenge of Jerusalem, whereas the ensuing Israeli conflict on the Gaza Strip introduced again the Palestinian trigger to the worldwide headlines.”
Hammouri famous, “Israel controls East Jerusalem. The [Israeli] municipality in Jerusalem retains stopping Palestinians from constructing new properties, by imposing exorbitant sums that Jerusalemites can not afford in trade for constructing permits. Such [restrictions] purpose at giving the holy metropolis a Jewish character, decreasing the Palestinian presence and making an attempt to displace Jerusalemites and change them with settlers.”
He added, “The Israeli courts have authorised [in the past years] the demolition of twenty-two,000 buildings within the metropolis of Jerusalem, and these selections are anticipated to be applied at any time. The approaching interval requires that UNRWA exerts extra strain on the Israeli occupation to guard the Sheikh Jarrah refugee households threatened with expulsion, and stop the occupation forces from continuing with its efforts to Judaize the neighborhood and displace its indigenous inhabitants.”
Based on a survey carried out by the United Nations Workplace for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs in 2020, eviction lawsuits had been filed towards at the very least 218 Palestinian households in East Jerusalem, together with households in Sheikh Jarrah. Many of the lawsuits had been initiated by settler associations. These lawsuits expose 970 individuals, together with 424 youngsters, to the danger of displacement.
Fakhri Abu Diab, a Jerusalemite member of the Committee for the Protection of Silwan, advised Al-Monitor, “Israel desires to show the Sheikh Jarrah neighborhood right into a closed army website, and it has closed the entrances to the neighborhood with cement blocks and iron obstacles to tighten the noose across the residents and finally drive them to go away their properties.”
He famous, “The Israeli measures additionally come to stop the residents of the neighborhood from speaking with different areas in East Jerusalem, to keep away from the union of its individuals within the face of Zionist plans, as occurred within the rebellion of Bab al-Asbat [in 2017], Bab al-Rahma [in 2019] and Bab al-Amud [in April of this year], to push the residents to give up and settle for Israeli dictates that purpose to interrupt the steadfastness of the Jerusalemites.”
Abu Diab added, “The occupation is constantly searching for to Judaize the Sheikh Jarrah neighborhood as a result of the latter serves as a protecting defend of Al-Aqsa Mosque, and it connects the Jerusalem neighborhoods within the north of Jerusalem to the occupied West Financial institution. Sheikh Jarrah can also be adjoining to the territories occupied in 1948. What’s extra, Israel is exploiting Sheikh Jarrah to pursue its Judaizing settlement venture known as ‘The Holy Basin,‘ which extends from Sheikh Jarrah to the city of Silwan.”
He identified that “the neighborhood makes it simpler for settlers to speak with the western a part of Jerusalem within the space of the Mount of Olives and the Hebrew College. Additionally, the neighborhood is residence to many Zionist establishments, such because the Ministry of Inside and the Border Guard Command, and to the ‘Mufti Palace,’ which was managed by settlement associations with the purpose of Judaizing the Palestinian id and reminiscence.”
Abu Diab concluded, “Zionist courts are a part of the Israeli system that’s marred by counterfeiting and forgery, and for many years they’ve been issuing many unfair and unjust rulings towards the Palestinians in Jerusalem, who possess paperwork proving their possession to their property and houses. These courts need their rulings to be consistent with the pursuits of the settlers, as they search to Judaize the holy metropolis, its neighborhoods and Islamic and historic landmarks.”