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Demolition of Palestinian homes rises despite pandemic

Demolition of Palestinian homes rises despite pandemic
Demolished homes of Palestinians see surge in June

By Abdelraouf Arnaout
JERUSALEM (AA) – An Israeli human rights center reported a sharp increase in the number of Palestinian homes demolished by Israel in the occupied West Bank in June, despite the outbreak of coronavirus.


"During the past month, Israel escalated the pace of house demolitions in the West Bank,” the Jerusalem-based B'Tselem NGO said in a Tuesday report.


The NGO said 63 Palestinian homes were demolished across the West Bank (not including occupied East Jerusalem) since the beginning of the year, 33 of which were destroyed in June only.


The report stated that a total of 151 Palestinians, including 84 minors, lost their homes and only in June, 100 Palestinians were displaced, 53 of whom were minors.


The NGO went on to warn against the high risk posed against the displaced Palestinians amid the spread of coronavirus.


Regarding the occupied East Jerusalem, B'Tselem said it witnessed a rise in home demolitions in June with 13 homes razed, displacing 51 people, including 31 minors.


"This number equals twice the rate of monthly demolition in the first five months of this year, which reached six homes per month," the NGO said.


The NGO noted that the Israeli pledge in April before the UN to refrain from demolishing homes during the pandemic was "only a promotional trick to avoid criticism".


Israel occupied the West Bank, including East Jerusalem, in 1967. Israel justifies the demolition of Palestinian homes by lacking building permits, despite the fact that Israel does not provide such permits to Palestinians.


*Writing by Mahmoud Barakat

source: News Feed
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