Pictures: Demolishing the sit-in tent in Silwan and the locals rebuild it
October 30, 2017

The occupation forces put down the sit-in tent in Silwan following an order from the occupation municipality claiming that it is illegal while the locals rebuilt it considering it as the symbol of resilience in the village.

Wadi Hilweh Information Center explained that municipality crews along with occupation soldiers suddenly raided on Monday noon the sit-in tent and took pictures. Afterwards, they put up a demolition order on it that should be executed within an hour or they will have to come back and execute the demolition themselves.

Accordingly, the head of the Committee for the Defense of the Real Estate of Silwan, members of the Committee and activists from the village as well as young men and women headed to the tent, rejecting the decision to demolish it.
The head of the Committee for the Defense of Real Estate Silwan, Murad Abu Shafi’, said that the Israeli municipality issued a decision to demolish the tent that was established in 2009 in the same place. In response to this decision, the protest was held inside and outside the tent by the residents. Troops broke into the Al Bustan neighborhood and surrounded the tent, then stormed it and assaulted the people without regard to the presence of old women and men.

Abu Shafi’ explained that the occupation soldiers randomly fired sound grenades to disperse the demonstrators around the tent while some of them took it down.

Abu Shafi’ also explained that the neighborhood’s lawyer headed to court and was able to obtain an order from the judge that the tent is “legal and should not be demolished”. He pointed out that they requested the officer in charge to postpone the demolition until the court order is issued but he refused and ordered to execute the demolition. 

Abu Shafi’ said: “The tent in Silwan was established several years ago and will remain the symbol of resilience in Silwan in front of the demolition orders that aim at displacing locals from their homes and lands”.

Abu Shafi’s added: “The tent is built for peaceful popular activities, rejecting all of the occupation municipality’s decisions whether demolition or irregularities and other unjust decisions against the population.”

The center added that the occupation forces raided the tent at night after it was rebuilt. They conducted a tour and tore part of it concurrently with raiding the nearby neighborhood of Bi’er Ayoub and closing a street.