Jerusalem's Mayor Barkat Publishes Planned Map for Al-Bustan
March 5, 2010

The Jerusalem municipality published the sketch of its plan for Al-Bustan neighborhood in Silwan. ( The plan involves the demolition of dozens of Palestinian homes in the neighborhood in favor of a biblical park for visiting tourists and the City of David settlement in the heart of the village. Barkat, Jerusalem's mayor, claims he wishes to restore the place to what it was 3000 years ago: "The King's Garden", meaning King Solomon's, although even the Israeli Antiquities Authority claims that there are probably no archaeological findings in the area. The residents of Al-Bustan absolutely oppose to the plan, which leads to the confiscation of their lands and demolishing of their homes. Barkat's plan to demolish Palestinian houses also break international law, as Silwan resides in occupied Palestinian territories. The residents demand the municipality to first care for the infrastructure and their social needs before providing more recreational grounds for tourists.