Young men from Silwan clean parts of Bab Al-Rahmeh cemetery
September 4, 2015

Several young men from Silwan cleaned parts of Bab Al-Rahmeh cemetery adjacent to the eastern wall of Al-Aqsa Mosque and that is at risk of being confiscated in favor of settlement projects. The young men insisted on working inside the cemetery on Wednesday, Friday and Saturday and cleaned it in response to the attempts of the Nature and Parks authority after placing poles and barbed wires in the cemetery’s lands. Dozens of young men from Silwan gathered on Friday and Saturday at Bab Al-Rahmeh cemetery in response to a call from the Islamic and National powers and cleaned the weeds and grass. The young men’s work was focused on the part confiscated by the so-called Nature and Parks authority in favor of National Parks. It is noteworthy that the occupation authorities assaulted the cemetery last Wednesday and placed barbed wires on 40% of the cemetery and cut many trees in addition to stepping on top of the graves. The young men of Silwan confronted the authorities and removed the poles and barbed wires on the lands adjacent to the cemetery and that are owned by Husseini and Ansari families. Wadi Hilweh Information Center was informed that a group of young men from Silwan removed the poles and cut the barbed wires placed last Wednesday’s morning on part of the cemetery’s lands. The barbed wires were placed around a land owned by Hussein and Ansari families in preparation to confiscate the land and turn it into a national park and implement settlement projects in the area especially that it is located near the eastern wall of Al-Aqsa Mosque. The young men insisted on their rejection of the attempts to control endowment and private lands especially that they include the remains of the Mujahedeen and Jerusalemite citizens. Bab Al-Rahmeh cemetery is considered one of the main Islamic cemeteries in Jerusalem. It stretches from Lions Gate until the end of the wall of Al-Aqsa Mosque near the Umayyad Palaces in the southern part. It is nearly 23 Dunoms (23000 square meters) and has many of the “Companions” graves most notably Obada Ben Al-Samet and Shaddad Ben Aws and many Mujahedeen who participated in the conquest of Jerusalem during the Ayoubi and Omari conquests; the occupation government has been seeking to confiscate the lands of the cemetery since 1968 to implement settlement projects such as the “Biblical Garden Paths” in addition to the “Cable Car” project that will connect Mount of Olives with Al-Buraq Square through the cemetery. Arrest The occupation forces arrested Ammar Shweiki and Khaled Al-Zeer from Bab Al-Rahmeh cemetery; they also confiscated Khaled’s car.

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