Early Thursday, Israeli authorities demolished residential structures in the northern Jordan Valley locality of al-Hadidiya, according to PNN municipal sources.Aref Daraghmeh, who monitors settlement activities in the Jordan Valley, said an Israeli occupation army force accompanied by heavy machinery broke into al-Hadidiya and proceeded to demolish residential structures that shelter local Bedouin families.
It is not the first time that this happens in the Jordan Valley: the army has repeatedly vandalized and demolished several Palestinian houses in the area, under the pretext of construction without permission.
As stated by WAFA Palestinian News & Info Agency, many Palestinians in Area C of the occupied West Bank, under complete Israeli occupation control, have no choice but to build without permits to be able to provide a shelter for their families, risking demolition of their residential structures by Israeli forces.
According to the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA), between December 30, 2014 and January 12, 2015, the Israeli authorities demolished 27 Palestinian structures in Area C of the occupied West Bank and five in occupied East Jerusalem, in addition to two self demolition incidents, due to lack of Israeli-issued building permits.
UN Resident and Humanitarian Coordinator James Rawley has argued that the Israeli demolitions violate international law. “Demolitions that result in forced evictions and displacement run counter to Israel’s obligations under international law and create unnecessary suffering and tension,” he said. “They must stop immediately.”
OCHA wrote in an official statement that, “The planning policies applied by Israel in Area C and East Jerusalem discriminate against Palestinians, making it extremely difficult for them to obtain building permits.”
“As a result, many Palestinians build without permits to meet their housing needs and risk having their structures demolished. Palestinians must have the opportunity to participate in a fair and equitable planning system that ensures their needs are met,” it added.
Israeli authorities are planning to annex the Jordan Valley into a completely Israeli area, primarily in agriculture, targeting to ban territorial contiguity between a future Palestinian state and the rest of the Arab world.
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