Israel's demolition of Palestine homes up 21% since last year: UN
A UN body says Israel’s demolition and confiscation of homes in the West Bank and al-Quds have increased by 21 percent this year compared to the previous year, as the regime’s land grab policy in the occupied Palestinian territories continues unabated.
"The number of structures demolished or seized, and people displaced, so far in 2021 represents an increase of 21 and 28 percent respectively, compared with the equivalent figures in 2020," the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (UNOCHA) said in a report published on Monday.
It added that the Israeli forces "demolished, forced people to demolish, or seized eight Palestinian-owned structures" throughout the West Bank, including al-Quds in September, the lowest recorded since June 2017.
The demolition and confiscation of the Palestinian structures "resulted in the displacement of two people, and affected the livelihoods or access to services of about 50 others," it said.
According to the report, 311 structures, or 56 percent of all structures targeted in 2021 in Area C, had been "seized without, or with very short, prior notice, utilizing various military orders, effectively preventing people from objecting in advance."
The report said that three structures were demolished in Area C, the lowest number recorded since mid-2018, adding, "All the structures were houses under construction, two of which were demolished on the basis of Military Order 1797, providing a 96-hour notice only, and very limited grounds, for legally challenging a demolition."
It noted that all the five structures in al-Quds were demolished by their owners, including two home extensions that displaced an elderly woman and a girl, bringing the total number of such demolitions carried out by the owners since the beginning of 2021 to 68.
The UNOCHA said no donated structure was demolished or seized in September, and that the number of such assets demolished or confiscated has increased by almost 96 percent so far in 2021 compared with the equivalent period in 2020 (from 94 to 184).
Israel routinely demolishes Palestinian houses in the occupied West Bank, claiming that they had been built without "permits," which are almost impossible to obtain.
In the 1948 war, about 957,000 Palestinians, or 66 percent of the Palestinians who lived in historical Palestine, were expelled and displaced.
The Palestinian community today makes up 21 percent of Israel’s total population of more than 9.3 million.
Palestinians in Israel have suffered discrimination, according to rights groups, and have seen many of their homes demolished.