Humanitarian Coordinator calls for end to punitive demolitions in the occupied West Bank
Jerusalem, 16 November 2015
The policy of such punitive demolitions was suspended by the Government of Israel in 2005 after an Israeli military committee deemed it ineffective as a deterrent. Such actions have restarted since mid-2014, with the exception of one case in 2009.
“I am distressed by reports of punitive demolitions carried out by Israeli security forces of five homes in the Jerusalem, Nablus, and Ramallah governorates in the last few days,” said Robert Piper, the UN Coordinator for Humanitarian Aid and Development Activities in the occupied Palestinian territory.
“We recognize Israel’s serious security challenges today, but any law enforcement response must be consistent with international law. Punitive demolitions are inherently unjust, punishing innocent people for the acts of others.”
Since 1 June 2014, the Israeli authorities have demolished, sealed or destroyed with explosives 16 structures in the above context. This has displaced 90 Palestinians, including 51 children, according to figures recorded by the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs. In addition, at least 12 apartments that were adjacent to targeted structures were damaged, temporarily displacing at least 55 people.
For more information, please contact Ms. Hayat Abu-Saleh, 054 33 11 816