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'Forced eviction of Sheikh Jarrah residents war crime'

By JT - May 08,2021 - Last updated at May 08,2021

Israeli forces climb a stairway towards the Dome of the Rock Mosque amid clashes with Palestinian protesters at Al Aqsa Mosque compound in Jerusalem, on Friday (AFP photo)

AMMAN — Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs Ayman Safadi on Friday stressed that forced evictions in Israeli-residents of Sheikh Jarrah neighbourhood in occupied Jerusalem is a crime that requires the international community to immediately stop it.

In several tweets, Safadi said: “The Palestinians who are threatened with departure are the legitimate owners of their homes, as evidenced by official documents that Jordan delivered to the brothers in the State of Palestine."

The deputy prime minister said that Israel, as the occupying power, is obliged under the international law to protect the rights of Palestinians to their homes in the Sheikh Jarrah neighbourhood.

The minister also said that Israel’s continuation of its illegitimate practices and provocative steps in the occupied Jerusalem, as well as violations of Palestinians’ rights, including the right of Sheikh Jarrah’s residents to their homes, is “playing with fire”. 

He welcomed the statement that was issued by France, Germany, Italy, Spain and the United Kingdom on Israeli settlements, which calls for ending the illegal settlement policy in the occupied West Bank.

Safadi said that building and expanding settlements, confiscating lands, demolishing homes and deporting Palestinians from their homes are illegal practices that undermine the opportunities of achieving a just and comprehensive peace, which is a regional and international necessity.

In a statement carried by AFP, the EU said that the situation with regard to the evictions of Palestinian families in Sheikh Jarrah and other areas of East Jerusalem is of serious concern. “Such actions are illegal under international humanitarian law and only serve to fuel tensions on the ground.”

Also on Saturday, Russia condemned attacks on civilians at Jerusalem’s flashpoint Al Aqsa Mosque compound and urged both sides to refrain from escalating violence.

More than 200 people were wounded when occupation forces clashed with Palestinians at the Al Aqsa Mosque Compound late Friday, capping a week of violence in the Holy City and the occupied West Bank.

“This development of events is perceived with deep concern in Moscow. We strongly condemn attacks against civilians,” the foreign ministry said in a statement.

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