The latest project could mean more evictions in Sheik Jarrah, which has become a battleground between Palestinian residents and right-wing Jewish groups.
By Edmund Sanders, Los Angeles Times
The city of Jerusalem gave the go-ahead Monday to a new Jewish housing project in the Arab-dominated neighborhood of Sheik Jarrah, raising the prospect of more Palestinian evictions in East Jerusalem.
The privately owned development would consist of 13 apartments in two structures. Construction is not expected to break ground for at least two years as the project works its way through the city and federal approval process.
"It's a very sensitive idea that is going to attract a lot of public attention," said Hagit Ofran of Peace Now, an Israeli group that opposes Israeli settlement construction. "Taking families out of their homes is a strong action."
Sheik Jarrah is also the location of the former Shepherd Hotel, a historic structure once owned by the mutfi of Jerusalem, where demolition began last month to make way for 20 Jewish housing units. President Obama and other world leaders have said that and other nearby projects will complicate Mideast peace talks because Palestinians hope to make East Jerusalem their capital.
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