Thu 13-June-2024

Settlers throw furniture of Sob Laban family out of its seized home

Sunday 23-July-2023

Two weeks after the Palestinian family of Sob Laban was displaced from its home in Aqabat al-Khalidiya neighborhood in the Old City of Jerusalem Jewish settlers embarked on Sunday morning on moving and throwing out the furniture belonging to the family into the street.

Nura Sob Laban the house owner and activists who were standing in solidarity with her this morning outside her home were forced by the Israeli occupation police and settlers to leave the area.

Israeli occupation forces also arrested Ra&rsquofat Sob Laban a member of the family as they dispersed Nura and activists from the vicinity of the house which is now occupied by Jewish settlers.

On July 11 Jewish settlers seized the house of the Sob Laban family in the Old City of Jerusalem after police forces forcibly evacuated the owners and their relatives.

At the time the deadline set by the Israeli occupation authority (IOA) for the evacuation of the Sob Laban family from their home expired. The house is located in the Muslim Quarter of the Old City and near the Aqsa Mosque.

Several years ago the settlers took over an upper part of the building and another part of it but the apartment of the Sob Laban family remained in the middle of the building surrounded by homes seized by settlers on all sides.

The family rented the house in 1953 from Jordan and was granted protected lease rights but after the occupation of Jerusalem it was placed under the management of the so-called “Custodian of Absentees’ Property” with the IOA claiming that its ownership belonged to Jews.

In 2016 Israeli courts had prevented the children of the Jerusalemite family from living inside the house to prevent them as a third generation from staying in the house as protected tenants.

For more than four decades the Sob Laban family has been fighting a legal battle against both settler groups and the IOA to prevent its expulsion from their home.

The Sob Laban family was not alone in grappling with Jewish settlers&rsquo greed to take over Palestinian homes in Jerusalem. In the late 1970s the IOA together with settler groups expelled the two Palestinian families that used to live near the house of the Sob Laban family.

Although the family was not expelled at that time they have been exposed to constant settler harassment under police protection.

As part of several attempts to force the family from its home the IOA in 2010 declared that the house ownership belonged to a settler group called &ldquoAteret Cohanim.&rdquo

Ateret Cohanim is an Israeli settler organization founded in the 1970s for the sole aim of seizing Palestinian homes and property in Jerusalem.

In response to the false ownership claims by Ateret Cohanim the family battled against it in Israeli courts for six years insisting on their right to stay in their home.

One of those Israeli courts allowed the Sob Laban parents to temporarily stay in their home without their children. 10 years after the ruling in May 2023 an Israeli court issued a final decision ordering the parents to leave their home in order to make way for a Jewish settler family.

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