Wed 15 Mar 2023 9:30 pm - Jerusalem Time

The occupation transfers ownership of large areas of Jerusalem to its favour

Jerusalem - "Jerusalem" dot com - Muhammad Abu Khudair - The head of the Maps Department, settlement expert Khalil al-Tafakji, revealed that the Israeli Land and Settlement Department had secretly transferred the ownership of a large area of the lands of Abu Dis, Ras al-Amud and al-Sawahra to the benefit of the occupying state and from there to associations settlements, including (Ateret Cohanim), in order to build a huge settlement neighborhood under the name (Kedmat Zion).

Al-Tafakji told that the issue has its roots in old allegations and an unproven story promoted by the occupation, about the purchase by a group of Jewish refugees at the beginning of the last century of a large area of land in Abu Dis, Al-Sawahra and Ras Al-Amud.

He added: The Israeli Ministry of Justice announced that it had completed secret procedures for the temporary transfer of ownership of the land to the “state”, through information provided by investigators whose services were hired by the “Custodian of Absentee Property” about the purchase of land by Jews at the beginning of the last century who recently obtained approval from the Central Court to transfer ownership to the Jewish Association.

These associations claimed that in the year 1924 the formation of “Faad HaShekhnim” (Population Committee), its chairman was Joshua Avizohr Senglopsky (his brother is the founder of the ORT company), and the association’s secretary was (Jacob Yehoshua Dement) with the aim of buying land and establishing a neighborhood for a religious Jewish group, and that they headed to the south East Jerusalem - the town of Abu Dis, in 1927, and 453 dunums were purchased. Construction was scheduled to start in 1930, but the events of the Al-Buraq Revolution in 1929 prevented this from happening, and construction has not been completed since then, due to the difficulties of defending it, and the construction in a Jewish geographical contiguity only. . Because of the outbreak of the revolution in 1936 and due to administrative problems in the association, all activities stopped completely.

The settlement association claimed that it was able to complete the registration of 371 dunums in the Tabu from the British Mandate records, and 82 dunums remained unregistered despite the completion of its purchase, as it claimed. Most of these lands remained in the year 1967, and after the construction of the separation wall and Israel's demarcation of the borders of occupied East Jerusalem, outside the borders, 60 dunums of 400 dunums of them remained inside the separation wall that was built in 2003 on the Israeli side. And the lands that were registered in the Jordanian registry - (enemy property). She moved to the general trustee in the Ministry of Justice in Israel.

Al-Tafakji pointed out that the local Committee for Planning and Building had previously approved a settlement outpost project on an area of 100 dunums. This plan came during the era of the former mayor of the occupation, "Ehud Olmert", and the plan stipulates the establishment of 230 settlement units, and the number has been raised today to 600 settlement units for the settlement of the "Ateret" settlement association. Kohnim," stressing that the settlers seized two Palestinian homes and settled 6 settler families in them.

Tafakji said that after the construction of the separation wall, the settlement godfather, Arvin Moskowitz, claimed in 2004 to buy two Arab houses in which 10 Jewish families lived. The families (Altmann, Nvon and Horwich, Revelin, Goldberg and Gnut) live in large homes with their 23 children.

He added that the plot claimed by the investigators of the "Absentee Property Department" belongs to Jewish families with an area of 16 dunums and is called Bir al-Sunna. It is one of the sites that were announced under settlement work - under Basin No. 31735 - from the lands of Abu Dis, as it has become registered in the Land Registry in the names of settlement associations. .

He explained that an association affiliated with the "One Hundred Shearim" settlement neighborhood also claims that it bought the same land in 1850 to house the homeless Jewish families at that time, and registered the land in the name of Rabbi "Zvi Pesach Frank", and some of this land was transferred over the years to the Israeli "Jen Kempt Fund", and after The Nakba of 1948. The land was managed by the "Custodian of Enemy's Property." After the 1967 war, these lands were transferred to the public domain owner. Some landowners and their heirs were found, according to their claim.

Al-Tafakji said that Moskowitz found in Olmert’s presidency of the occupation municipality in Jerusalem what he needed, an open door and a listening ear, and Olmert pushed the plan forward, and the local planning committee approved the plan, but even months ago it was stuck in the district committee for planning and building with an unofficial government objection, waving On the horizon is a modified plan for the construction of more than 600 settlement units, a school, a synagogue, public institutions, and a park.

Al-Tafakji confirmed that these lands are located within ponds and land with fixed ownership in the land registry in the names of Jerusalemite families such as Ghosheh, the Al-Hassan family, and others.

He said that the occupation turned the Cliff Hotel into a center and base for the border guards, under the pretext that the hotel is "absentee property," which belongs to the Ayyad family from Abu Dis.

Israeli investigators claimed before the Land Department / Land Settlement in the year 2021 that this area, which is called Area A, is owned by Jews. Ateret Cohanim,” stressing that the “Custodian of Absentee Property” is also working to find similar lands in the villages of East Jerusalem.


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The occupation transfers ownership of large areas of Jerusalem to its favour