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Palestinians marking the 64 anniversary of al-Nakba (catastrophe) with protests, while Israeli security reacted with conducted arrests campaigns on May 15Palestinians marking the 64 anniversary of al-Nakba (catastrophe) with protests, while Israeli security reacted with conducted arrests campaigns on May 15Palestinians marking the 64 anniversary of al-Nakba (catastrophe) with protests, while Israeli security reacted with conducted arrests campaigns on May 15Palestinians marking the 64 anniversary of al-Nakba (catastrophe) with protests, while Israeli security reacted with conducted arrests campaigns on May 15Palestinians marking the 64 anniversary of al-Nakba (catastrophe) with protests, while Israeli security reacted with conducted arrests campaigns on May 15Palestinians marking the 64 anniversary of al-Nakba (catastrophe) with protests, while Israeli security reacted with conducted arrests campaigns on May 15Palestinians marking the 64 anniversary of al-Nakba (catastrophe) with protests, while Israeli security reacted with conducted arrests campaigns on May 15Palestinians marking the 64 anniversary of al-Nakba (catastrophe) with protests, while Israeli security reacted with conducted arrests campaigns on May 15Palestinians marking the 64 anniversary of al-Nakba (catastrophe) with protests, while Israeli security reacted with conducted arrests campaigns on May 15Palestinians marking the 64 anniversary of al-Nakba (catastrophe) with protests, while Israeli security reacted with conducted arrests campaigns on May 15

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Today: Sep 19, 2017

West Jerusalem Municipality Intensifies its Measures against Palestinian Construction in Occupied East Jerusalem

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The West Jerusalem Municipality (WJM) is in the process of intensifying its measures against Palestinian 'illegal construction' in Occupied East Jerusalem by imposing the instructions of the Building & Planning Law on 'building violators'.

According to a statement issued by the WJM, a number of measures will be taken against Palestinian Jerusalemites. These include taking aerial photographs with the aim of identifying (pinpointing) violating buildings and confiscating construction equipment and materials, such as tractors, electric engines & others.

Immediate bills of indictments will also be submitted against those described as 'building laws violators'. The municipality's attorney general requests the court to issue harsh rulings, including actual imprisonment against building violators.

The statement noted that in case of building in violation of the agreed-upon scheme, the municipality will ask the court to approve immediate demolition of the excess building or to issue an order to prevent the building from being used without changing the building scheme.

Furthermore, the municipality will issue administrative demolition orders. In case of serious and grave violations by violating the administrative orders, it will be in opposition to these violations at the planning & building committees.

According to human rights data, the municipality has demolished over 600 Palestinian houses and other structures in Occupied East Jerusalem for lacking building permits during the period 2000 - 2006, and closed some 10 houses belonging to activists convicted of carrying out attacks against Israelis, such as Silwan Cell belonging to the Islamic Resistance Movement (Hamas).

According to data obtained from JCSER & the Land Research Center, there has been unprecedented intensification in the building control teams in Occupied East Jerusalem over the past two years, including confiscation of trucks loaded with cement heading for construction workshops in Palestinian neighborhoods, confiscation of construction equipment and materials, and bringing house-owners and drivers to trial.

JCSER's media unit noted that the most important development is the implementation of the penalty of imprisonment imposed on Palestinian Jerusalemites described as 'building laws violators', and imposition of double penalties on Palestinians, including imposition of high fines and demolition of illegal houses.

JCSER's lawyer, Farid Mahajneh, said, 'these measures are numerous and the number of Palestinians affected by these measures cannot be identified. Such measures are not applied to the residents of West Jerusalem. The municipality imposes fines on building violators without demolishing the house.'

The Mayor of Jerusalem, Uri Lupolianski, recently stated that the municipality will take measures against the Palestinian construction inside the Old City of Jerusalem, especially buildings with multiple floors. Two days after the statement, the municipality's building control teams demolished a three-storey building in the Chain Gate in the Old City of Jerusalem, adjacent to the Al-Aqsa Mosque. The building was home to 60 family members (Mohammad Ashour Ar-Razem's family).

Lawyer Mahajneh noted, 'the housing crisis and the impossibility of obtaining building permits from the Jerusalem Municipality, due to high license fees and the long period stretching across three years, force Palestinians Jerusalemites to build before obtaining building permits. In many cases, the municipality refrains not only from granting the necessary permits, but also expedites the demolition of houses against which demolition orders have been issued.'