Arabs and activists film the eviction (Hezki Baruch)
Update: dozens of media have published corrections to this story. It turns out that the evicted Arab tenants had not lived in the property prior to 1968.
That year is critical given that in order for east Jerusalem Arabs
to receive "protected tenant" status, they must be able to demonstrate
that they signed a lease prior with Jordanian authorities and inhabited
the dwelling prior to August 20, 1968.
The eviction of the Arab Shamasneh family from a Jerusalem house in the Shimon Hatzaddik neighbourhood has been all over the press (See here, here and here). The Israelis are being painted as heartless creatures who are throwing elderly Arabs out on the street. But the judgement of the court only went against the Arab tenants when they ceased to pay rent. Another falsehood being spread by the press is that while Jews can reclaim their property, no such law exists enabling Palestinians to reclaim theirs. Not only have there been cases of Palestinians being compensated, but it is impossible for Jews to receive compensation for property they owned in Arab countries.
Arutz Sheva reports:
Sixty-nine years ago, the Hubara family, a Jewish family living in
the heart of Jerusalem, was expelled from their home in the Shimon
Hatzaddik neighborhood by British and Arab forces as the Jordanian army
invaded and occupied the city during the early stages of Israel’s War of
The homes in the neighborhood had been purchased by the Sephardic and Ashkenazic communities in 1876.
Called ‘Sheikh Jarrah’ by the city’s Arab population, Shimon
Hatzaddik was emptied of its Jewish population, who became refugees
before any Palestinian Arabs did, and whose homes were then seized by
When Israel liberated Shimon Hatzaddik in 1967, the Hubara family
found their home was occupied, like so many other Jewish-owned
properties in eastern Jerusalem.
For the next 38 years, the Hubara family’s home in Shimon Hatzaddik
remained in Arab hands, with the family unwilling to endure the lengthy
legal battles required to redeem the property.
In February 2005, tragedy struck. Shimon and Dalia Hubara’s
26-year-old daughter, Odelia, was murdered near a Tel Aviv beachfront in
a suicide bombing attack carried out by the Islamic Jihad terror group.
Following their daughter’s tragic death, the Hubaras decided to take
back what is rightfully theirs, turning to the Israel Land Fund for
Twelve years later, following a court order against the Arab
squatters for their refusal to pay rent or repair damage they had caused
to the property, police returned the Hubara home to its legal owners.
During Tuesday’s eviction, Arab squatters, aided by far-left activists, protested the eviction and threw cinder blocks at police.
Read article in full
But the Hubara family had sold on the property to Arie King of the Israel Land Fund over 10 years earlier, according to Haaretz. Dalia Hubara denies that revenge for the tragic death of her daughter Odelia had prompted the Hubaras to be plaintiffs in the legal case to recover their house:
Dalia Hubara says she feels very bad about Tuesday’s eviction of the Shamasneh family from their home in the Sheikh Jarrah neighborhood of Jerusalem. Hubara, one of the heirs to the house, told Haaretz she “does not like to see people removed from their homes, not Jews and not Arabs.”
Hubara inherited the building, a rather small house in the neighborhood, named in Hebrew Shimon Hatzadik, from her mother, who lived there until 1948. Over 10 years ago the family, who inherited the property, sold their rights to right-wing activist Aryeh King, today a member of the Jerusalem city council. They had wanted to sell the house to a Palestinian family before that, but the Palestinians could not raise the money needed, said Hubara.
“King and his friends got in touch with us and we thought it would be good to be rid of the property and sell it, she said. “I considered selling it to the people living there, my husband was in contact with them. We wanted to do it so what happened [Tuesday] would not happen. But they couldn’t manage to buy the house,” said Hubara. (...)
King said, “I’m not very happy that they threw them out on the street either. But they brought it on themselves. The original eviction date was in March 2015. But the woman who lived there was supposed to give birth and they asked for another three months. I told them take half a year and leave whenever you want in the next half year, but they continued to neglect and ignore it.
“Even in the last few weeks,” King continued, “we offered them another period until the father passes away, but I said I don’t trust them anymore because they have a debt of 180,000 shekels [about $50,000] for rent, and damage of another 160,000 shekels.” King says he told them if they provide a check from a guarantor he could trust, he would consider letting them stay longer, but they refused. It’s unpleasant, he said, but “they did everything possible so [the eviction] would happen.”
The elderly parents have no reason whatsoever to remain in the street because their daughter lives right next door, and there is evidence they will receive housing aid from the European Union, said King.
Read article in full
Lyn Julius at the Huffington Post and UK Media Watch