Please write to your MP asking him or her to write to the Foreign and Commonwealth Secretary. Please use your own words, but here are some points which, if you wish, you could make.
- You could suggest that Dominic Raab should write to the Israeli Government, protesting that the current spike in demolitions is yet further denial of the rights of Palestinians. If you wish, you might go further. In his statement of 6 July on Global Human Rights Sanctions, he said that the Government was continuing to explore extending the sanctions to perpetrators of other human rights abuses. You could suggest that members of the Israeli Government might very well be included in any further wave of sanctions.
- You could point out that house demolitions are one of the very many ways in which the Israeli authorities oppress the Palestinians, contrary to the Geneva Convention and international law. Theirs is a racist regime which denies justice to Palestinians, has introduced apartheid, and is seeking to Judaise the whole of historic Palestine.
- If the Israeli Government goes ahead with its plan to annex part or all of the West Bank, Palestinian suffering will worsen therefore it will not change the systematic and relentless oppression which the Palestinians face every day.
- There was a spike in demolitions in June. 106 structures were demolished on 50 occasions. 37 of those were inhabited houses, 16 houses were uninhabited at the time, and 53 were of structures which affected livelihoods, agriculture, or infrastructure.
– 137 people were displaced, of whom 54 were adults and 83 children.
– an additional 436 people were affected, of whom 249 were adults and 186 children.
– 28 of the incidents were in Area C of the West Bank, 18 in East Jerusalem and 2 affected Bedouin Villages in Israel. In 11 of the incidents in East Jerusalem the residents had to demolish their own houses. Israeli authorities impose very significant charges for the demolition which the Palestinian residents could not possibly afford to pay so in effect they had little choice but to demolish their own home.
– In all these incidents the reason given was that the house or structure had been put up without Israeli planning permission. However, it is exceedingly difficult for Palestinians ever to get planning permission from the Israeli authorities. Consequently, Palestinians proceed to construct homes and structures vital for living for which they know that are at risk of demolition. At least one third of all Palestinian homes in East Jerusalem lack an Israeli-issued building permit, therefore over 100,000 Palestinian residents at risk of displacement.
- You might ask your MP how he or she would feel if they knew that any day, they could be told that their house would be demolished. And if it were demolished, how would his/her wife/husband/partner feel. And how about their children? Might not they be mentally or emotionally scarred for life?