The Occupation continues to target Palestinian population centres that fall near the Wall or its planned path. This policy has led to the issuing of demolition orders to homes and businesses in Beit âAwa and Husan. In Beit âAwa, a number of homes, some in varying stages of construction, will be razed. In Husan, the Occupation plans to destroy a number of businesses.
***image2***Beit âAwa is located near the Green Line, west of Hebron. Since the construction of the Wall in 2004, the people of Beit âAwa have faced the demolitions of structures, land and olive trees. The most recent orders will affect 22 residents. Two residential structures that house a total of 8 persons will be destroyed, leaving the two families homeless. Agricultural land is also under threat; a garden, wells and fences are all scheduled to be demolished.
Most of the threatened structures in Beit âAwa are in their last stages of construction and 14 persons will have their future homes destroyed. The razing of homes under construction is frequent in the West Bank. Using their control over area C as a pretext, the Occupation regularly prevents the natural growth of Palestinian population centres.
The plight of the Suwate family is illustrative of the Occupation system. The family was living in the Beit âAwa municipality long before the 1967 occupation. Following Oslo, family land was classified as area C. Recently, three brothers, âAbd al-Rahim, Mohammed and Musa, began to build new homes on their property. Their respective families have been growing, and living conditions are too cramped in the family home. Despite the fact that they own the land on which they are building, the Occupation has issued demolition orders.
***image3***Husan, located to the west of Bethlehem and surrounded by the Betar, Har Gilo and Neve Daniyel settlements, has also been hit with demolition orders. 8 different businesses, among them shops and car maintenance facilities, are under threat. Almost all of the 8 owners have large families to support, meaning that 60 additional people are depending on the income generated from these businesses. An additional 34 workers will also find themselves out of a job if the orders are carried out.
These orders threaten the already devastated economy of Husan. Car service and maintenance shops were destroyed in 2001. Agricultural lands have been lost to the nearby settlements and groups of settlers continue to attack farmers.