Broken promise: no halt to Israeli colonization in return for peace talks
Palestinian woman in front of her house that has just been demolished by IDF bulldozers in Hares, near Nablus, West Bank. Photo by Jaafar Ashtiyeh /AFP
2013… A Year of More Oppressing Colonization
Statement issued by the Land Research Centre, Hebron, Palestine
December 31, 2013
The Palestinian Authority refused to renew peace talks with Israel unless the latter stopped all colonial activities. However, due to the American intervention and pressure, Palestinians had to resume negotiations with Israel in exchange for American promises of stalling colonization.
To Palestinians’ dismay, the facts on the ground proved Israel has never respected the international law nor any signed conventions and agreements. Israel does not even respect its supporters, simply because it is an entity that is founded on occupation, colonization, displacement, replacement and racial discrimination.
Instead of freezing any colonial activity, the government of Israel doubled the budget allocated to colonization in the 1967 occupied Palestinian territories from 58 million NIS in August, 2013 to 614 NIS in November of the same year.
Instead of keeping their promises to America- even in theory- the Prime Minister of the Israeli government Netanyahu was ratifying building thousands of units just before Kerry’s visits to the region. With each batch of freed prisoners, Israel has made sure to build thousands of residential units in exchange.
The current Israeli government set examples of horrendous racial discrimination during its election propaganda starting with their idea of sending Palestinians away to the West and their promise to annex the rest of the West Bank to their state, and ending with the Chief of Staff of the Israeli Defense Forces’, Moshe Ya’alon’s, decision to void the orders of Israeli courts to dismantle four colonial outposts.
The government continued with its colonial and expansive approach along with the Israeli occupation forces and bodies, the Civil Administration, the “price tag” groups and colonists among others who have been supporting that trend. Here is the sum of their attacks during 2013:
1. About (289) break-ins and attacks on Al Aqsa Mosque which the Jews want to be their second Temple of Solomon.
2. Around (17) attacks on mosques and churches.
3. Demolition of (249) Palestinian residences that used to shelter around 1200 citizens including 650 children who have become homeless.
4. New demolition orders to around (3,131) Palestinian residences.
5. Demolition of (371) Palestinian structures and demolition orders to another (510) structures.
6. Confiscation of circa (14204) dunums of Palestinian lands for the benefit of colonization.
7. About (19,083) attacks on trees, (11,133) of which were olive trees. The rate of irreversibly damaged or totally burnt trees constituted 32% of the total.
8. The number of the barriers (including security checkpoints) in the West Bank reached up to 331 making Palestinian land fragmented and disconnected.
9. More than (7,000) residential units were added or ratified during the year, and schemes to build another 25,000 new units were planned.
Land Research Centre – while recording violations- observed the intensified wave of attacks on Al Aqsa Mosque and the unwavering attempts at Judaizing the city as well as the continuation to demolish Palestinian residences and the displacement of the residents of the Jordan Valley and the Negev. Land Research Centre asks the international community and the United Nations to make Israel abide by the Fourth Geneva Convention and resolutions of the Hague.
The Israeli occupation violates the principles and values of the International and civilized world. LRC implores the world to boycott this entity politically and economically. It also asks the Arab nation and pro- justice people to show solidarity to Palestinians and their rights.
A prayer house was built on the site of the Al Aqsa mosque in the 7th century CE. Since then it has been expanded and rebuilt several times, twice because of destruction by earthquakes. The mosque built in 1035 on the orders of Fatimid caliph Ali az-Zahir is the one that still stands today (above).
2013… The Year of a Massive Attack on Al Aqsa Mosque
Statement released by Land Research Centre about the Israeli violations in the occupied city of Jerusalem- Land and Residency- the outcome of 2013
December 31, 2013
Not a single day passed without hearing about a break-in; an attack; a scheme or a conspiracy on Al Aqsa Mosque by radical colonists under the protection of the Israeli occupation authorities, much to the confirmation of the idea that the colonists’ actions are but part of a well-studied Israeli plan to demolish the Mosque and establish the Temple of Solomon in its place. The occupation has been working in continuation of its 1948 approach to Judaize the city and kick its indigenous inhabitants out.
No wonder that Jerusalem and its residents are among the most targeted since Jerusalem constitutes the heart of Palestine and the key of the Palestinian cause. Whoever takes control of Jerusalem can take over Palestine at large. Palestine without Jerusalem is like a body without a soul. Hence, Israel has been trying to eliminate any Palestinian trace in Jerusalem by attacking people, land, history and even sanctuaries and heritage.
Land Research Centre recorded these attacks on Jerusalem during 2013:
1. About (289) break ins and attacks on Al Aqsa Mosque and its squares, among which 12 cases of break ins by Israeli police attacking worshippers.
2. Demolition of (102) residences and expulsion of about (564) residents including (326) children. 90 residences were demolished by the State Municipality while 12 were demolished by their owners who were forced to do so.
3. Demolition orders to circa (2669) residences owned by about 16 thousand people.
4. Confiscation of around (2821) dunums for the benefit of colonization and National Gardens.
5. Demolition of (44) structures and demolition orders for (72) structures.
6. Uprooting of (522) trees, of which (155) were olive trees.
7. Evicting Bedouins living in Jerusalem and its surroundings and making them homeless.
8. Continuation of excavations in Silwan and the Dung Gate as well as in the Western Wall, Jaffa Gate and under Al Aqsa Mosque.
9. (625) new residential units were added to the colonies in Jerusalem.
Land Research Centre considers these breaches a grave violation to the international law and the Geneva Fourth Convention. They are war crimes that must be subjected to an international interrogation.
The Land Research Centre ( LRC ) was established in Jerusalem in 1986 as a branch of the Arab Studies Society headed by Mr. Faisel Husaini. LRC is an independent, non-governmental, non-profit Palestinian organization whose activities cover areas in the West Bank (including East Jerusalem) and Gaza Strip. Donations and contributions given by individuals or organizations and joint projects with international and local organizations and institutions fund the activities of the Center.
Ever since its establishment, the Centre has been conducting a number of general activities to accomplish its goals and general objectives. The Centre has achieved a number of goals and is looking forward to accomplishing its future goals.
Vision: The Palestinians must have full control over their lands as they have full capability of exploiting their lands in the agricultural and residential fields in comply with the human rights and towards full sovereignty.
Mission: The protection and development of land and defending the Palestinians right of ownership of land
In order to achieve the mission statement, LRC has set the following objectives:
Restraining the Israeli Occupation measures against land, residences, and water.
Developing the natural and economic resources.
Developing the local policies.
Organizing farmers and public awareness.