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Palestinian destroys own shop to avoid Israel demolition fees Open in fullscreen

The New Arab

Palestinian destroys own shop to avoid Israel demolition fees

Jerusalem has been a target of Israeli settlements and home demolitions [Getty]

Date of publication: 15 November, 2017

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Palestinian shop owner Amin Abbasi was told that Israeli forces will demolish his shop and force him to pay extortionate fees should he refuse to carry out the destruction himself.

A Palestinian shop owner destroyed his own shop on Tuesday after finding out occupying Israeli forces were due to demolish it.

The Israeli-run Jerusalem municipality at the beginning of November threatened Amin Abbasi into demolishing his own shop, in the Silwan neighbourhood of occupied Jerusalem, within a 30-day deadline.

He was told that Israeli forces will demolish it and force him to pay extortionate demolition fees should he refuse to tear down his premises, according to Wadi Hilweh Information Centre.

The demolition order came because Abbasi's shop allegedly did not have a building permit.

Four out of five of Palestinians in occupied East Jerusalem live under the poverty line, and applying for building permits comes with various taxes and fees amounting to tens of thousands of dollars.

As a result, only seven percent of Jerusalem building permits have been allocated to Palestinian neighbourhoods in the past few years.

Applications for building permits are also known to take years to be processed, giving Israeli courts a loophole to increase Palestinian home demolitions by branding structures as "illegal".

Jerusalem has been a target of illegal Israeli settlements and home demolitions amid a wider plan to annex the Palestinian part of the city.

 

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