Thursday, 28 August 2014

Israel approves Jewish religious school in heart of East Jerusalem


Israel's Jerusalem municipality has approved plans to build a Jewish religious school in the heart of occupied East Jerusalem, Palestinian activists and Israeli media said.

The Ohr Somayach yeshiva will occupy a nine-story building in the middle of the Sheikh Jarrah neighborhood, Haaretz reported.

The plan was reportedly approved six months ago by Jerusalem's Municipal Planning and Building Committee and given the go ahead on Wednesday.

A Ma'an reporter said the building will occupy 1,900 square meters and have three underground floors.

The religious school will be located between the al-Hayat Medical Center and the Nasif gas station.

Activist and Sheikh Jarrah resident Salih Diab told Ma'an that the building of a Jewish religious school, and the implementation of evacuation orders against Palestinian residents, will turn Sheikh Jarrah into a "Jewish neighborhood."

The land was reportedly confiscated in the 1980s under Israel's Absentee Property Law of 1950, which had been used as a tool to annex Palestinian land.

A 2013 report prepared by the Civic Coalition for Palestinian Rights in Jerusalem said that the law has been used extensively in Jerusalem to confiscate property and land owned by West Bank Palestinians. more

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