Moscow – France, Germany, Spain, and the UK have condemned Israel for tearing down Palestinian homes in the occupied West Bank.
The four countries tendered their condemnation in a joint statement issued on Tuesday.
“We remain seriously concerned by the continued demolition of Palestinian property by Israeli authorities.
“The practice causes unnecessary suffering to ordinary Palestinians and is harmful to the peace process,” they said.
Israeli forces reportedly demolished 12 buildings in Wadi Hummus outside East Jerusalem allegedly for violating construction rules after the Israeli top court rejected an appeal by their residents.
The four EU countries called this episode “particularly egregious” as a number of destroyed buildings were located in areas under the jurisdiction of the Palestinian Authority as defined by the Oslo Accords between Israel and the Palestinians.News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the EU had on Monday urged Israel to immediately halt the razing of Palestinian homes, drawing rebuke from Public Security Minister Gilad Erdan.The EU criticised the demolitions as undermining hope for a lasting peace in the region.“In line with the EU’s longstanding position, we expect the Israeli authorities to immediately halt the ongoing demolitions.“The continuation of this policy undermines the viability of the two-state solution and the prospect for a lasting peace and seriously jeopardizes the possibility of Jerusalem serving as the future capital of both States,” said a spokesman for the EU’s foreign policy arm, which represents the bloc’s 28 member states.Erdan, who criticised the EU, said that the bloc was blindly accepting Palestinian “lies” about the homes.
“The spokespeople of the EU, as usual, bought into the lies of the Palestinians without any in-depth examination while spreading their bias.
“When illegal construction presents a security threat, Israel has the authority, including according to the Oslo Accords, to enforce the law against it.
“The Supreme Court even ruled in favor of such. The Palestinians purposely built their houses next to the security barrier!,” Erdan wrote on Twitter.
The homes, in an area known as Wadi al-Hummus, are part of Sur Baher, but fall outside of Jerusalem’s municipal boundaries and inside Palestinian Authority-controlled areas of the West Bank.
Erdan said that under the Oslo Accords — which established the Palestinian Authority in 1994 and divided the West Bank into areas A controlled by the Palestinian Authority, B under joint control, and C under Israeli control — Israel has the right to act against security threats.
“In the context of today’s demolitions in Jerusalem’s Wadi Al-Hummus, it is worth emphasising that the residents themselves were the ones, who wanted to move to the west side of the security barrier, and the barrier was then diverted eastwards for them.
`Afterwards, they then began illegally building in a region situated in Jerusalem, even though they were in areas A, B and C,” Erdan wrote. (dpa/NAN)