Monday, June 3, 2019

'Absolutely reprehensible': Israel to auction off EU-funded classrooms it confiscated from Palestinians last year

Source: Mondoweiss

by Yumna Patel  |  June 3, 2019

A decision by Israeli authorities to auction off prefabricated classrooms that were confiscated from a Palestinian village last year is causing controversy among local and international leaders.

A report from the Guardian last Friday said that the Israeli Defense Ministry was planning on holding an auction this coming week to sell the two prefab classrooms, citing an advertisement for the "seized property" in the Israeli Maariv newspaper.

The classrooms, along with two tents and three metal sheds, were confiscated by Israeli forces last October from the rural Palestinian village of Ibziq, in the northern occupied West Bank.

The classrooms had been donated to the community by the European Union, which has donated hundreds of similar structures to primarily Bedouin communities across the occupied territories.

They were confiscated under the pretext that they were built "illegally" in Israeli-controlled Area C of the West Bank, where Palestinian are required to obtain Israeli construction permits in order to build anything — a nearly impossible task.

"A list of auction items, seen by the Guardian, showed dates, item numbers, locations and descriptions that matched the confiscated classroom structures," the Guardian said, adding that the auction was being held by Israel's Civil Administration — the agency responsible for enforcing the Israeli government’s policies in the occupied territories.

"What the Israelis have done, to confiscate these classrooms, is illegal," Palestinian human rights lawyer and activist Farid al-Atrash told Mondoweiss. "But to then go on and sell it, is reprehensible. It goes against all international human rights laws and norms.”

Please go to Mondoweiss to read the entire article.

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