The Naqib family has lived on their land since before 1948. Many Palestinian families in the city live in what the State calls ‘illegal conditions’ — and under the constant threat of demolition — because they cannot attain building permits for their homes.
Hundreds of police officers descended on the Al-Karm neighborhood of Lydd (“Lod” in Hebrew, “Lydda” in English) Tuesday morning in order to evict single mother Hannah al-Naqib and her four children from their home, and to demolish it.
Police blocked off the surrounding streets and prevented local residents from approaching while they were forcibly evicting the mother and her children. Around 100 residents managed to break through and protested the eviction and demolition.
To help the single mother, Hannah’s family and neighbors built the home for her. It had a demolition order against it because it was built without the proper permits. The family tried to stop or delay the demolition in court, but to no avail.
The demolished home is next to a number of other homes owned by the Naqib family, all on land owned by the family, and many of which also have demolition orders pending.
The Naqib family lives on land near the Ganei Aviv neighborhood, which was expropriated from Palestinian families in a procedure whose legality has been in doubt ever since. The family has lived on the land since before 1948, and the local urban building plan gave a green light for building the new neighborhood years ago. The city, however, has yet to approve a master plan, and even destroyed a house in the 1990s.
According to a map of the urban building plan, one can see that their homes were built on land slated for residential construction. Thus, the city’s decision regarding “illegal construction” seems especially arbitrary:
According to activists nearly 80 percent of Palestinians in Lydd live in “illegal conditions” according to the state’s definition, due to the fact that their homes do not have building permits. This situation allows authorities to use the threat of demolition against a large part of the local population, in accordance with the needs of the political establishment.
Read this article in Hebrew on Local Call here.