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Palestinian families in Sheikh Jarrah should reject Israel's offer to be 'protected tenants'

6 15 114
04.08.2021

After a three hour deliberation, the Israeli High Court proposed a compromise on Monday that will see the postponement "for decades" of the eviction of Palestinian families from their homes in Sheikh Jarrah, occupied Jerusalem. The proposal stipulates that a member of each family would be granted a lifetime "protected tenancy" on their own property in return for paying an annual rent of NIS1,500 ($465).

"This is the practical solution," said Yitzhak Amit, a judge from the three-member panel of the High Court. "We recommend it precisely because… you do not want anyone to be thrown out of their home. This compromise will give us breathing space for a good many years until either the land is properly regulated or there is peace."

On the face of it, the proposal looks good for the Palestinian families as it will give them the chance, perhaps for decades, to stay without an eviction order hanging over their heads. The rent is at least ten times lower than the market rate. It also looks as if the proposal puts pressure on the Nahalat Shimon Company, which claims ownership of the Palestinian property.

However, the reality is not so clear. Ilan Shemer, the lawyer who represents the Israeli-owned company, did not agree to the proposal and said that whatever is proposed, if accepted, would be an "empty agreement". He accused the Palestinians families of not accepting the court's rulings. "I have been handling this case for years, and they have not abided by any decision, so why do you think they would do so now?" he asked. This........

© Middle East Monitor


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