JERUSALEM (Ma’an) – Israeli bulldozers on Wednesday morning raided al-Zaayyem village in East Jerusalem and demolished steel structures used as houses sheep and poultry barns.
The Israelis claim the structures were built without licenses.
“Families were surprised with Israeli military vehicles storming a tract of land where ten Palestinian households live in steel structures and use ten other structures as barns. The soldiers started to empty the structures and demolish them,” says Abu Mousa As-Saedi, one of the owners.
The Israelis, he added, have not make clear how many structures will be demolished.
He highlighted that Israeli authorities claimed the land was confiscated, “but we confirm that we bought the land from residents of Eisawiya and have been trying since years to obtain construction licenses from the Civil Administration.”
About 100 people lived in the steel structures, a majority of whom are children, he added. Al-Saedi noted that some of the structures were built 20 years ago, and the rest were built 10 years ago.
A member of a local follow-up committee in Eisawiya Muhammad Abu al-Hummus confirmed the land belonged to the town. He highlighted that the area was slated for confiscation for the benefit of E1 settlement project which Israel announced in 1994.
The project, he said, includes an industrial zone, residential houses and hotels to be built on 12,443 dunams of Palestinian land of al-Tur, Anata, Eizariyya and Abu Dis villages.