ActionAid Palestine is deeply concerned over escalating violence and the violation of Palestinian rights across the occupied Palestinian territory (oPt).
On Monday (10 May), 26 Palestinians, including nine children, were killed in Gaza overnight by Israeli air strikes. Two Israelis were killed after Palestinian armed groups fired rockets and missiles towards Israel.
The violence comes after more than 700 Palestinians were injured in clashes with Israeli security forces at the Al-Aqsa Mosque compound and across the West Bank and Gaza Strip.
Tensions have flared due to the planned, illegal evictions of eight Palestinian refugee families living in the Sheikh Jarrah neighbourhood of East Jerusalem, where Israeli settlers have waged a lengthy legal battle to seize their properties.
Ibrahim Ibraigheth, Country Director of ActionAid Palestine, says: “In Sheikh Jarrah, 58 people, including 17 children, are set to be forcibly displaced. After losing their homes in the 1948 war, these families have lived in the East Jerusalem neighborhood for nearly seventy years.
“If they are evicted, it will be a grave violation of international law.
“Israeli policies of dispossession, demolitions and systematic neglect have chronically undermined the development of Palestinian communities in East Jerusalem.
“We are calling on Israel to immediately stop all forced evictions, including those in Sheikh Jarrah and other parts of the occupied West Bank.”
Muna Al-Kurd is a young woman who is facing eviction from her home in Sheikh Jarrah.
She leads the #SaveSheikhJarrah campaign to mobilize local and international support for saving her neighborhood.
Muna says: “We rely on the honorable people standing in solidarity with us. Even a short tweet or post is a treasure.
“We always say that we won’t leave. Until the last moment, we will not leave.”
Mariam Al-Ghawi, 60, was forced to leave her home in Sheikh Jarrah in 2009. It is currently occupied by Israeli settlers under protection of Israeli forces and discriminatory court decisions.
Miriam says: “Every day for 11 years I have returned to sit in front of my stolen house. This is where four generations of my family live, we live under constant threat of attack and aggression from Israeli settlers. I cannot visit my friends or relatives under these threats. It is my right to return home and I will continue to protest.”
ActionAid Palestine condemns the continuation of Israeli occupation and the latest Israeli escalations in the Gaza Strip and East Jerusalem.
ActionAid Palestine is calling on the EU and the signatories of UN Geneva Convention to put pressure on Israel to fulfil its international commitments to protect civilians in accordance with international law.
International actions are needed to guarantee the end of Israeli polices of demolition, displacement, cessation of excessive force against civilians, protesters, healthcare workers and worshippers.
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Notes to editors:
According to an UN OCHA survey in 2020, at least 218 Palestinian households in East Jerusalem, including the families in Sheikh Jarrah, have eviction cases filed against them. The majority of these cases have been initiated by settler organisations, placing 970 people, including 424 children, at risk of displacement.
East Jerusalem remains part of the occupied Palestinian territory where International Humanitarian Law applies. Forced evictions violate their rights to adequate housing and to privacy.
Evicting civilians is prohibited by the Fourth Geneva Convention.