PA to file lawsuits against Israel's home demolitions

PA cabinet leader orders formation of committee to document the demolition of homes in eastern Jerusalem and file lawsuits.

Dalit Halevi ,

Mohammad Shtayyeh
Mohammad Shtayyeh

Palestinian Authority (PA) cabinet leader Mohammad Shtayyeh on Monday announced his government's support for Arabs whose homes were demolished in eastern Jerusalem last week.

Israeli forces sealed off and began demolishing ten of the over 100 illegally-built structures in Sur Baher, which were erected in defiance of a 2011 Civil Administration order barring construction near the security fence.

Shtayyeh instructed that a legal committee be set up which will include representatives from various government ministries to document the "crime" of demolishing the houses and file lawsuits with the Palestinian courts. He said the committee’s work will begin over the next few days.

In addition, Shtayyeh noted that the decision to stop the implementation of the signed agreements with Israel was made in response to the ongoing Israeli violations of the agreements, including the offsetting of the PA tax money, land expropriation and home demolitions.

The PA accused Israel of carrying out a massacre following the home demolitions last week, and called on the international community “to intervene immediately and bring an end to Israeli aggression.”

The move was condemned by the European Union, which said the demolitions undermine the “viability of the two-state solution”.

Britain and Germany added their voices to the condemnation of Israel, saying the destruction was "particularly egregious".

There was also an attempt to condemn Israel at the UN Security Council over the demolitions, but the US blocked the move.