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Erakat Appeals to Stop Israel's Policies Against Jerusalemites.

RAMALLAH, August 3, 2010 (WAFA)- Marking one year after the eviction of the Al Ghawi and Hanoun families, Head of the PLO Negotiations Affairs Department Dr. Saeb Erakat appealed to the international community to stop Israel's brutal policies against Palestinians in occupied East Jerusalem.

Today marks the first anniversary of the eviction of the Al Ghawi and Hanoun families from their homes in the Sheikh Jarrah neighborhood in East Jerusalem. Dr. Erakat marked the anniversary by calling on the international community to take effective measures to halt such Israeli colonization actions in occupied East Jerusalem and elsewhere in the West Bank, a press release said.

"At a time when world leaders passionately call for direct talks, I call on them to exert the same level of passion to preventing Israel from continuing its colonization process in the occupied Palestinian territory, particularly in East Jerusalem" Dr. Erakat stated. "A year ago two Palestinian families with 19 children were forcibly evicted from their homes by Israeli police, who subsequently allowed Israeli settlers to occupy their homes."

"One night before the Arab League met in Cairo to discuss the fate of the direct talks, on Thursday the 30th of July, Israeli settlers seized a building in the heart of the Old City with the assistance of Israeli police. Today thousands are threatened by Israel's continuation of its illegal colonization policies, which including home evictions, demolitions and having their identification cards revoked, thereby stripping them of the right to live in their native city," he added.

"Israel keeps claiming that Jerusalem is an open city with equal rights for everyone. I challenge Israel's courts to allow Palestinian Jerusalemites to claim back their properties in West Jerusalem. I challenge Israeli governments to stop expelling Palestinians from East Jerusalem and to cease bringing more settlers into the city. I challenge Israel's Jerusalem municipality to cease demolishing Palestinian homes and to cease putting in place its relentless plans to expand Israeli settlements in their stead. And I challenge the international community to act on its recognition that the key problem is the Israeli political and judicial establishment's relentless execution since 1967 of its colonization program in the occupied Palestinian territory."

Dr. Erakat concluded: "There will be no Palestinian State without East Jerusalem as its capital, and there will be no peace without an end to Israel's occupation and a reversal of its colonization policies. Our vision is for an open and shared city of Jerusalem as the capital of two states, based on agreed borders. The international community supports this vision and yet Israel makes every effort to sabotage the possibility of achieving it."

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Publication:Palestine News Agency (WAFA) (Gaza, Palestine)
Date:Aug 3, 2010
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