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Supreme Court delays session on Sheikh Jarrah evictions amid Jerusalem tensions

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The Supreme Court, amid daily violent clashes in East Jerusalem, has canceled a hearing scheduled for Monday that could have determined whether four Palestinian families in the city’s Sheikh Jarrah neighborhood will be evicted.

After the families asked Attorney General Avichai Mandelblit to become a party to the case, Mandelblit’s office asked the Supreme Court for two weeks to consider the matter.

The court gave Mandelblit until June 8 to consider whether he will become a party to the case. The planned evictions — already approved by lower courts — will not go forward in the interim.

“A new date will be determined within the next 30 days. In the meantime, until further notice, I order a freeze on the decision by the appellate court, which does not imply any position regarding [that lower court’s decision],” Justice Yitzhak Amit wrote in the ruling.

Palestinians pray during a protest as local Palestinian families face eviction in the Sheikh Jarrah neighborhood of East Jerusalem, on May 8, 2021 (Menahem KAHANA / AFP)

In all, over 70 Palestinians in Sheikh Jarrah are set to be evicted in the coming weeks, to be replaced by right-wing Jewish Israelis. The Palestinians live in houses built on land that courts have ruled were owned by Jewish religious associations before the establishment of Israel 1948.

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The anticipated decision to evict the families came as Jerusalem lives through tense, violent days. The city has been on edge in recent weeks as Palestinians have clashed with Israeli police, with both sides blaming the other for igniting the confrontations.

Over 300 Palestinians have been wounded in the confrontations,........

© The Times of Israel

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