Sunday, January 6, 2013

Like a dagger in the heart..

New Jerusalem highway to cut Arab village in half

Beit Safafa highway construction
A resident of East Jerusalem’s Beit Safafa overlooking the highway construction works yesterday. Photo by Emil Salman
Jerusalem municipality is part and parcel of Israel's overall land annexation policies. This time, it cuts Beit Saffafa in two, to build a highway:

"The road, passing mere meters away from residents’ homes, will not only ruin their quality of life but will cut many of them off from the mosque, bakery, nursery school and other facilities located a few minutes’ walk away. They will now have to travel a long way via roads, underpasses and bridges to get to the other side of the village...
The village residents will not benefit from the new road, whose main beneficiaries will be West Bank settlers from Gush Etzion who will be able to drive to Jerusalem’s center or Tel Aviv without stopping at a single traffic light... The road is being built on the basis of a plan from 1990, when the city confiscated the residents’ lands for this purpose...
Consequently, the people whose lives will be forever changed by the new road were not given a chance to submit
objections or demand compensation.
The construction in Beit Safafa began although the confiscation process of the lands on which the road is to pass has not been completed, and before building permits have been issued for the bridges...
All the trees in the small orchard in Salman’s yard will have to be cut and a few meters from his balcony the city plans to build an eight-meter acoustic wall, which the city says is a “concession” to the residents... “There’ll be a separation wall like in the West Bank, in the middle of Beit Safafa,” says Ala Salman. “It’s a great injustice...”

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