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Hamas to demolish 75 Palestinian homes in Gaza

By Mason White 1:50 PM February 13, 2013
Home destroyed by the Gaza government 

By: Shifra Unger
The Hamas government in Gaza has announced that it will demolish 75 Palestinian homes in Gaza. But since it is not the Israeli government doing the demolition, the world is remaining quiet.

Several members of the Abu Amrah family in Gaza City demonstrated outside the offices of the Palestinian Legislative Council, protesting a decision by the Hamas-led government to demolish 75 houses belonging to the family in the neighborhood of Al-Rimal.

The government said it decided to demolish the houses because they were built illegally on public land. The demolition is scheduled to take place today.

“We are refugees and have been living in this area for decades,” the family told a local Palestinian newspaper. The family also said that the government in Gaza suggested five new areas where families could choose to move.

But the father said that all these areas are sparsely populated border areas and have no services. He urged officials in the government of Gaza to suggest moving the families to populated areas, preferably not too far from where they live now. He said it would be difficult to send the children to school if they live in remote areas.

Another resident, Abu Hazim Hmeid, who lives in the area scheduled for demolition, appealed to President Mahmoud Abbas and the Prime Minister of Gaza, Ismail Haniyeh, to cancel the demolition noting that 75 families were being left homeless.

“The demolition will take place Wednesday, and when our children come home from school, they will not know where to go because at the time of their arrival, their houses will be gone. The only place they will have is the street and it is very cold outside,” he told news reporters.

Several months ago, the Gaza government demolished another area that belonged to members of the same family, and offered residents land in the northern Gaza Strip to purchase. Some families agreed while 36 families refused.