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Israeli forces seal apartment of Jerusalem synagogue attacker

July 1, 2015 4:42 P.M. (Updated: July 2, 2015 11:41 A.M.)
JERUSALEM (Ma’an) -- Israeli forces on Wednesday sealed the home of one of the Palestinian suspects responsible for killing five Israelis in an attack on a Jerusalem synagogue last November.

The Abu Jamal family told Ma'an that Israeli forces stormed the neighborhood of Jabal al-Mukabbir early Wednesday and sealed the home of Uday Abu Jamal with steel boards.

Uday and his cousin Ghassan Abu Jamal killed four Rabbis and a policeman last year before being shot dead at the scene.

Relatives said that Israeli forces deployed in the alleys of the neighborhood, before evacuating Uday's family from the building and sealing it off.

Witnesses said Israeli forces arrested a young man because he was standing near Abu Jamal house.

An Israeli military spokesperson was not immediately available for comment.

The cousins’ houses were given demolition orders soon after the synagogue attack last year but the families appealed the decision.

On Sunday, Israeli forces questioned family members and took pictures of the interior and exterior of the two homes as well as roads leading to them. 

No explanation was given for their actions.

Israel stopped punitive house demolitions in 2009 but resumed the practice last November when Israeli forces razed the house of a Palestinian man that killed two Israelis by running over them with his car last October.

Watch dogs have widely criticized the Israeli policy of home demolitions, previously focused on the West Bank and Gaza, saying that it contributes to a cycle of violence and merely inflicts collective punishment on family members.

In mid-November, Israeli rights group B'Tselem said that punitive house demolitions are "fundamentally wrong" and contravene "basic moral standards by punishing people for the misdeeds of others."

Israeli authorities also revoked the Jerusalem residency rights of Ghassan Abu Jamal’s wife, ordering her to move to the West Bank. Their children are allowed to stay in East Jerusalem but have been denied social benefits.

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