“Punitive” demolitions, which have become a trademark of Israel’s latest round of repression against the Palestinians of the Occupied Territory, are not only a pointless lashing out against defenseless families, but are downright counterproductive, even by Israel’s own standards. Since 1967 the Israeli authorities have demolished some 46,000 Palestinian homes in the OPT, either as “collateral damage” in military incursions (18,000 were destroyed in Gaza during the 2014 attack) or because, since 1967, Israel has refused to grant building permits to Palestinians, who are then forced to build “illegally” and face demolition. In virtually none of these cases was “security” the reason for demolition, as testified by the fact that none of the owners were ever arrested.
The dispute over the settlements, for years a divisive issue in Israeli politics, has recently penetrated into the heart of European politics, too. There’s growing anger in the European Parliament against President Martin Shultz, who has apparently adopted the position of the Israeli right regarding an economic project in the occupied territories.
An Israeli peace group has launched a comprehensive database of information on the location, activities and the evasive tactics used by businesses located in the illegally occupied Palestinian territories.
Haaretz newspaper pointed out that other countries, including Egypt and Jordan, supported the French position in this regard. As a result, the PA is seemingly mulling over suspending its anti-settlement bid at the Security Council to please the French side.
The Israeli regime is set to expropriate more than a thousand acres of Palestinian land in the northern part of West Bank irrespective of the international outcry against the expansion of illegal settlements in the occupied territories.