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Israeli forces demolish structures in Ramallah-area villages

Jan. 18, 2016 4:19 P.M. (Updated: Jan. 20, 2016 12:34 P.M.)
RAMALLAH (Ma'an) -- Israeli forces on Sunday demolished several structures in two occupied West Bank villages in Ramallah district saying they had been built without the necessary permits, locals told Ma'an.

In the village of Kharbatha, locals said Israeli forces demolished a garage belonging to a resident identified as Jamal Ahmad Darraj, as well as an extra room attached to a house belonging to Hamdi Abu Khalil.

In the nearby village of Kharbatha al-Misbah, Israeli forces also damaged a quarry belonging to Ahmad al-Habiba.

Under Israeli law, Palestinians are required to obtain building permits before they can build in land classified as Area C, which under the Oslo Accords falls under full Israeli control.

However, the Israeli authorities refuse the vast majority of permit requests. Because of the difficulties gaining permission, Palestinians frequently build without permits at the risk of having the structures demolished.

Last month, the The EU missions in Jerusalem and Ramallah demanded that all Area C demolitions be halted, but Israel has historically ignored EU requests to halt violations against Palestinians, as well as demands to stop settlement expansion.

According to the Israeli Committee Against House Demolitions, more than 48,480 Palestinian homes and structures have been demolished by Israel since 1967.

Meanwhile, The UN Officer for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs recorded the demolition of 501 Palestinian-owned structures in 2015, which displaced 659 people.
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