A spate of illegal demolitions were carried out by the Israeli army on August 5, Wednesday, in the occupied territories of West Bank and East Jerusalem. Since Tuesday, Israeli authorities have destroyed three Palestinian homes, a barbershop and various unspecified structures on a large tract of land near an illegal Israeli settlement, as well as a number of animal shelters.
Khaled Abu Tayeh, a member of the Committee for the Defense of Silwan Land in occupied East Jerusalem, said that Israeli police and Jerusalem municipality staff escorted bulldozers into the Ein al-Lowza area of Silwan to carry out demolitions on Wednesday. They took down two Palestinian homes belonging to the brothers, Samer and Suleiman al-Qaq. Both reportedly received demolition orders two days ago, following which they had to empty out their homes. Another home was demolished in the same neighborhood, along with a barbershop. Israeli authorities cited lack of official sanctions for carrying out the demolitions.
The city of Dura, situated southwest of the southern West Bank city of Hebron, also saw demolitions take place on Wednesday. According to the Coordinator for the Anti-Wall and Settlement Committee, Rateb al-Jabour, the Israelis targeted structures on Palestinian-owned land adjacent to the illegal Israeli settlement of Negohot. Israeli soldiers accompanied bulldozers which leveled the whole area by demolishing all the structures. This was reportedly done to facilitate the expansion of the nearby illegal Israeli settlement.
On Tuesday, Israeli bulldozers, accompanied by the army, demolished animal shelters of two local residents in the Kisan village, east of Bethlehem city, that were allegedly built without a permit.
Such demolitions regularly conducted by Israel are illegal under the fourth Geneva convention as they amount to collective punishment of the occupied people. Israel has used these demolitions to confiscate and usurp Palestinian land for its settlement expansion and to displace Palestinians from the area in order to change the demographic balance in specific cities and villages. Palestinians are routinely deprived of their right to own property and build homes as the occupation authorities make it almost impossible for them to obtain Israeli construction permits.