Israeli Supreme Court announces date for Sheikh Jarrah appeal hearing

Israeli Supreme Court announces date for Sheikh Jarrah appeal hearing
Israel’s Supreme Court has announced that an appeal by Palestinian families facing forced expulsion from their homes in the Sheikh Jarrah neighbourhood of east Jerusalem will be heard in July.
2 min read
09 June, 2021
Israeli security forces have blocked off access to Sheikh Jarrah as Palestinian families face expulsion [Getty]

Israel’s Supreme Court has set a date for a hearing on the planned forced expulsion of dozens of Palestinians from East Jerusalem’s Sheikh Jarrah neighbourhood.

The hearing will now take place on 20 July.

Sami Irshaid, a lawyer for Palestinian families facing expulsion said that an appeal had been presented to the court in the name of the Eskafi, Qasim, Al-Jaouni, and Al-Kurd families.

Approximately 550 Palestinians face expulsion from Sheikh Jarrah after Israeli settler organisations laid claim to their homes.

Yaqoub Arafah, the head of a committee representing the families, told The New Arab’s Arabic-language service that the families are waiting for more details from the Israeli court and but had received no other information apart from the court date.

Israel’s Attorney-General, Avichay Mendelbit, said on Monday that he will not intervene in the case, prompting anger from the Palestinian families.

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Mohammed Al-Kurd, a Palestinian activist from Sheikh Jarrah who faces being expelled from his home, said on Twitter that Mendelbit's decision was "yet another void attempt to frame our expulsions as a 'property dispute'". 

The Israeli group Peace Now accused the attorney-general of engaging in "a cynical attempt to evade responsibility".

Al-Kurd and his twin sister Mona were arrested by Israeli forces on Sunday before they were released hours later.

Most of the Palestinian families who currently face expulsion from Sheikh Jarrah were settled there in the 1950s under a UNRWA programme after being forcibly displaced from their homes inside Israel during the 1948 creation of the state, known as Al-Nakba or "The Catastrophe".

Israeli settler organizations have laid claim to their homes with what rights groups say is a highly dubious justification that Jews lived there before 1948.

While Israeli courts have turned over Palestinian property in East Jerusalem to settlers before, Palestinians expelled from their homes in West Jerusalem and other areas within Israel's 1948 boundaries are forbidden by Israel from recovering their properties.  

Dozens of people have been injured by Israeli security forces in the area since 13 April, when protests broke out over the forced expulsions. The area is now surrounded by Israeli security forces with non-residents forbidden to enter.


Sheikh Jarrah infographic