Beit Ommar Residents Receive Seven New Demolition Orders
On June 18th the Israeli Civil Administration issued a new round of demolition orders for structures built on privately-owned Palestinian land in Beit Ommar, including five homes and two wells. That evening, soldiers distributed notices demanding that residents evacuate their homes by July 3rd, giving residents- all of whom have documented proof of ownership that predates the establishment of the nearby Karmei Tzur settlement in 1982- less than three weeks to leave before their homes are destroyed.
One of the condemned wells, owned by farmer Ibrahim Arar, was built just four months ago. The well, which cost him over $15,000 of his savings, enabled him to irrigate his fields and is crucial for maintaining his trees. If carried out, the demolitions will threaten both his plants and his source of income.
These demolition orders mark the sixteenth attempt by Israel to expel the residents of Beit Ommar from their lands: Beit Ommar has received 15 demolition orders prior to the June 18th orders. Over the past six months, settlers in Karmei Tzur have built over three hundred new houses while Palestinians are forbidden from building any new structures on their own land. Many still build without Israeli permission- which is rarely given- but must do so at the risk of losing their homes, their incomes, and their stability.