Israel to delay demolition of Susya due to diplomatic pressure

Susya demolition delayed

Haaretz newspaper on Saturday reported that the Israeli authorities on Wednesday asked the Supreme Court for a two-week delay in announcing its position on Susya village despite the fact the Israel’s war minister, Avigdor Lieberman, has declared that there will be no more delays in the demolition decision.

The paper said that the request was made after senior European and British diplomats pressured Israel’s Prime Minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, and Lieberman not to demolish the village.

Quoting a source involved in the matter, Haaretz noted that ahead of Netanyahu’s visit to London, British diplomats contacted Israeli officials and informed them that Britain has reservations about the evacuation of Susya.

The same source said that Israel’s Attorney General, Avichai Mendelblit, also supports postponing the evacuation in order to conduct further legal investigation.

Israeli sources claimed that the Palestinian village of Susya was “illegally” established near a Jewish settlement holding the same name and that demolition orders have been issued against its buildings.

The petition to demolish the Palestinian village has been under consideration since 2014.

Susya is located in Area C, which is under full Israeli civil and security control, and its residents have been expelled from their homes several times over the past 30 years.

In 1986, the village was declared a national park and the Palestinian residents were evacuated to their agricultural lands. The Israeli army evicted them again in 2001 and knocked down the caves and huts they were living in.

The Supreme Court ordered to halt the demolitions and allow Susya residents to stay in the village, but it did not ask the so-called Civil Administration to allow them to build new buildings instead of the ones destroyed. None of the established structures have building permits.

Qamar Mashriqi, the Susya residents’ lawyer, said, “Lieberman is determined to wipe out the village to enable settlers to complete their takeover of the area. The international community must make it clear to Israel that it will not accept the removal of entire Palestinian villages from Area C in violation of the international law.”

(Source / 04.11.2017)

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