Posted on 26th July 2012, by & filed under Abandoned Property Law, East Jerusalem, Evictions, Itay Epshtain.

The Sumarin, a family of 12, including 5 children, are under an imminent threat of forced eviction, as the November 28thdeadline for vacating their Silwan (East Jerusalem) home nears.


The Custodian of Absentee Property took control of the property, following the passing of the house owner Musa Sumarin in 1983. At the time, his sons resided in Jordan and Saudi Arabia, and according to the Abandoned Property Law (established to expropriate property from Palestinian refugees and internally displaced persons, following the 1948 war and 1967 occupation of the West Bank), the house was confiscated by the Custodian that ultimately transferred possession to Himnuta, a subsidiary company of the Jewish National Fund (JNF).


For the last 30 years the Sumarins have lived in their house in peace, until a 2006 Jerusalem Magistrate Court decision, in the absence of the family, granted the JNF appeal to forcefully evict the family, and levy a 2 million ILS (roughly 500,000 USD) fine. Some two months ago the family was served with an order by the State Bailiff’s Office to vacate their home by November 28th 2011, or face forcible eviction.


ICAHD staff visited with the family earlier this week to express support and solidarity in their resistance of forced eviction in East Jerusalem. Ahmed Sumarin told ICAHD staff: “If they come in force, we will peacefully resist. This is our home; we have nowhere else to go.” In most cases, homes evicted of their Palestinian residents were turned over to settlers, aiming to Judaize East Jerusalem, as part of a comprehensive Israeli government policy of ethnic displacement.


Israel is perpetrating grave violations of international law by denying Palestinian East Jerusalemites right to adequate housing, development, and self-determination, as well as violating the prohibition on residency revocation. To read more about illegal Israeli practices in East Jerusalem, follow the link to the ICAHD report  ‘No Home, No Homeland: A New Normative Framework for Examining the Practice of Administrative Home Demolitions in East Jerusalem’, press here…