For Palestinians, Israeli High Court is a legal fig leaf for home demolitions

A Palestinian holds a child as he watches Israeli hydraulic shovels demolishing a Palestinian building, north of the occupied West Bank city of Hebron on 14 February 2018 (AFP)
A Palestinian holds a child as he watches Israeli hydraulic shovels demolishing a Palestinian building, north of the occupied West Bank city of Hebron on 14 February 2018.  (Photo: Hazem Bader / AFP / Getty Images)
A new B’Tselem report highlights how the High Court, often seen as the last judicial recourse against demolitions, ends up being complicit in perpetuating such policies

By Tessa Fox| Middle East Eye| Feb 6, 2019

“It’s not an honest game,” Abu Imad told Middle East Eye.

Lying back on a mattress on the ground, Abu Imad soaks up the midday sun.

As he smokes a cigarette in front of the welcome tent of his village, Abu Nuwar, he can see the rocky hills roll down and then up again to the Israeli settlement of Kedar.

In spite of his demeanour, it is hard to imagine how the head of Abu Nuwar could be relaxed while the village is under constant threat of demolition by Israeli authorities.

Since 2005, the village has filled over 250 petitions to the Israeli High Court against planned home demolitions and confiscation of property and land to make way for illegal settlements.

While it is the highest Israeli legal institution that could rule on the fate of the village, Abu Imad believes the court is part and parcel of the Israeli occupation.

“It’s not an honest game,” Abu Imad told Middle East Eye.

While a high court in any democracy should act separately and independently from the government, a new report by Israeli human rights NGO B’Tselem accuses the Israeli High Court of continually acting as an arm of the state to justify Israel’s policy of home demolitions.

Released on Wednesday, the report – entitled Fake Justice – outlines the responsibility of the court’s justices in the demolitions of Palestinian property in the occupied Palestinian territory.

Read the full article here →