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Israeli forces demolish Palestinian home in Kafr Qasim without prior notice

March 2, 2017 2:06 P.M. (Updated: March 2, 2017 4:06 P.M.)
NEGEV (Ma’an) -- Israeli bulldozers demolished an under-construction house owned by a Palestinian citizen of Israel in the central Israeli town of Kafr Qasim on Thursday morning.

Israeli police raided the home of Ramzi Bin Bari and prevented anyone from entering, while Israeli bulldozers demolished it.

According to locals, the demolition was carried out because the building lacked difficult to obtain Israeli-issued building permits. Bin Bari had recently moved to the town, locals added.

Despite attempts by residents to prevent the demolition, Israeli bulldozers continued until the house was completely destroyed.

Bin Bari told Ma’an that his case was still being discussed in Israeli courts in an attempt to gain a permit for the property. He added that he had not received a demolition order for the property, and was shocked when Israeli bulldozers came to demolish his house.

Another Palestinian home was demolished in Kafr Qasim on Sunday, also without prior notice according to the homeowner.

The issue of home demolitions in Israel has been in the limelight since the beginning of the year, notably due to the outrage caused by the demolitions in the town of Qalansawe and the deadly demolition raid in Umm al-Hiran in January.

The spike in home demolitions in Palestinian-majority areas of Israel has come after Israeli demolitions of Palestinian homes in the occupied West Bank and East Jerusalem reached a record high in 2016.

In December, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu released a video to address settlers of the Amona outpost, assuring them that he would commit to “enforcing laws” on “illegal construction” in Israel, referring primarily to Palestinian communities that are often forced to build without Israeli-issued building permits, due to what rights groups have attributed to discriminatory zoning policies in Israel which have excluded many Palestinian-Israeli communities, notably Bedouins, from being included in the regional and municipal development plans.

Right groups have argued that the aim of home demolitions is to forcibly displace Palestinians from the region, regardless of their status as residents of the occupied West Bank or East Jerusalem, or as citizens of Israel -- despite the varying legal justifications used by Israel in each instance.
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