Israeli police have evicted two Palestinian families from their homes in Jerusalem and handed the dwellings over to Israeli settlers. The eviction took place in Arab East Jerusalem after an Israeli court upheld a Jewish settlement organisation’s land ownership claims.
The proceedings over the claim for ownership have been continuing since the 1980’s. They focus on East Jerusalem’s Sheikh Jarrah region and Jewish settlers have already moved into six other buildings in the area. These latest evictions come in the middle of a dispute with the United States over settler expansion in East Jerusalem and the occupied West Bank. President Barack Obama has demanded that Israel halt settler expansion in these areas while the Middle East peace process is continuing. But Israeli Prime Minister Benjami Netanyahu says Israelis have a biblical right to live anywhere in Jerusalem.