RAMALLAH, July 19 (JMCC) - The Israeli government has signaled to the High Court of Israel that it plans on extending a law on abandoned properties to East Jerusalem
The law, which has been used in the past to expropriate the property of Palestinian refugees in Israel proper, now threatens the property of Palestinians living in the West Bank
has expropriated such property in the past, but the legality of such actions have been less straight foward. Palestinians living in the West Bank have remained under Israeli control, and therefore do not necessarily constitute as absentee property owners because Israel does not allow them to enter Jerusalem.
Attorney General Yehuda Weinstein recently informed the Supreme Court that the state plans to apply the law on abandoned properties to properties in East Jerusalem. This in effect will mean that Israel can legally take over thousands of acres and buildings worth hundreds of millions of shekels... Read
If the court accepts the view of the state, it will likely spur strong protest on the part of the Palestinians and sharp criticism by the international community.
The matter was brought to discussion before the Supreme Court following appeals of two cases in which the Jerusalem District Court decided in favor of owners of abandoned property, and two other cases in which judges ruled against. A special seven-justice panel ordered Weinstein to tell the court whether the state intends to apply the law concerning such properties in East Jerusalem...
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