Posted by & filed under Contact your politicians, Don't Say You Did Not Know, House Demolitions, House Demolitions, UK Specific.

A demolition of the Bedouin village of Al-Araqib in 2014

– A demolition of the Bedouin village of Al-Araqib in 2014, which has to date been razed more than 90 times. Photo with thanks to Rabbi Arik Ascherman. 

– March 2016

Within the first eight weeks of this year over 440 Palestinians (a majority of whom were children) were displaced from their homes – equivalent to over half the total number of Palestinians displaced in all of 2015. A further 1,700 Palestinians lost structures relating to their sources of income. The Jordan Valley, the South Hebron Hills and East Jerusalem are the major targets along with E-1 where on Sunday, 21st February, the sole remaining school for young Bedouin children in that area was demolished. February 2016 recorded the highest number of demolitions in the West Bank since the UN began recording in 2009, and the weekly average of home demolitions in Area C has reached an increase of over 400% higher than during 2015. We are appalled by this deteriorating situation and compiled a report with recommendations for the UN’s Human Rights Council, which we expect to be reviewed later this month. With this newsletter, we urge you to bring this issue to the attention of your MP’s, and we provide a sample letter below for you to do so easily.

We find hope as Arabs and Jews joined in protest this week against the impending demolition of Umm al-Hiran and Atir. These joint villages have been slated for demolition for the sake of developing a Jewish town and forest in their ruins. We know that the village of Susiya was saved only through international attention and protest, so now is the time we must increase our support Umm el-Hiran. Please take 30 seconds to sign this petition. For reference, this poster from Adalah clearly contrasts the clear discrimination of the Um el-Hiran case. You can also find a letter from ICAHD UK’s Director which was recently published in the Guardian on the issue.

Another UN press release now calls for the immediate halt to demolitions in the Occupied West Bank, highlighting Israel’s obligations under International Law. Do we have what it takes to call our political representatives to speak up for us? We think so! Please raise your voices and send this sample letter (or anything else you wish to compile yourself on the issue) – which can be quickly sent in a matter of minutes.

This is just weeks after the UN’s projected outline of the $112 million needed for urgent shelter for Palestinians (a mere 20% of the total aid proposal for this year). Yet this is after 48 years of Occupation! ICAHD abhors Israel’s shirking of its responsibilities under International Law, and the consequent externalization of costs – whether the ‘fee’ for demolition meted onto the victims themselves, or huge costs paid by the wider international aid community. Let’s not let Israel get away with it – please write to your MP using our sample letter attached.

8 Responses to “Take Action Now – Write to your MP!”

  1. Robyn Dasey

    Helen Hayes MP
    Please take time to digest this critical information about the illegal Isaeli demolition of Palestinian homes. The Israeli Campaign Against (Palestinian) Housing Demoition provides critical support against these demolitions and helps rebuilding, as well as informing everyone who will listen as to the ongoing destruction of Palestinian lives. This year they highlight the crucial role of women.

    Reply
  2. John Logan

    Dear (add your MP)
    I am writing to seek your personal response to the following situation and with the request that you also please approach the Foreign Secretary, Rt Hon Philip Hammond MP, for his feedback regarding Israel’s demolition of Palestinian homes and the resulting forced displacement that are happening in the West Bank, East Jerusalem and also within the state of Israel.
    I am interested in this situation because I have been to Israel/Palestine and have witnessed the situation on both sides of the divide. As you know I have campaigned on this issue for 15 years.
    I am also a supporter of ICAHD UK that supports the Israeli Committee Against House Demolitions, which works for the end of the Occupation with a just and sustainable future for both people groups.)
    On 2nd March the UN’s Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) stated that since the beginning of 2016, Israeli occupation forces have destroyed or dismantled 323 homes and other structures across the West Bank, displacing 440 – more than half of whom were children. A further 1,700 Palestinians lost structures related to their sources of income, while a third of the targeted structures were provided as humanitarian assistance. According to OCHA, “these are some of the highest levels of demolition and displacement recorded in a similar time frame since 2009”.
    In a press release on 18th February, Robert Piper, UN humanitarian coordinator for the Occupied Palestine Territory, demanded that Israel immediately halt the demolitions and he called on Israel to respect the Palestinians’ right to adequate housing and humanitarian assistance. Earlier this year UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon called the Israeli planning policies in the West Bank restrictive and discriminatory.
    Demolitions also continue in East Jerusalem, including punitive demolitions, a policy that Israel introduced again in 2014 despite its own findings that it does not deter Palestinian acts of violence. And within Israel the state has approved plans to demolish Umm al-Hiran and Atir in the Negev therefore continuing its history of expulsion and displacement of the Bedouin families since 1948. This legitimizes Israel’s longstanding policy against Palestinian citizens of the state, a policy that is rooted in an ideology of racial discrimination, segregation, and dispossession.
    If you have never seen what a demolished home looks like, I urge you to watch this short film clip by the UN which ends by asking how many more Palestinian homes will be demolished before it stops.
    As a signatory to the Fourth Geneva Convention Britain is guilty as a third party as long as it allows violations of international law to continue. Please inform me when our government will exert sufficient pressure on Israel, including the imposition of sanctions, and as a member of the EU, will the FCO lead the way in calling for the suspension of the EU-Israel Association Agreement whilst Israel is in breach of human rights?
    Thank you.
    Your name

    Reply
  3. Roy Little

    In the name of humanity and sanity I ask for the demolition of homes and other buildings to stop now, Roy LIttle

    Reply
  4. Terry Phillips

    These house demolitions contravene international law and human rights. All true supporters of the existence of the state of Israel condemn them.

    Reply
    • Joan Perkins

      Since I experienced an ICHAD tour some years ago I continue to support any moves to put a stop to this ghastly increase in attempts to eliminate the rightful inhabitants of this land

      Reply
  5. ann barnwell

    Yet another outrage against Palestinians by the cruel Israelis! Please plead for these forgotten people.

    Reply
  6. Martin Gem

    Please do what you can to persuade the Israeli Government to stop these demolitions.

    Reply

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