Many of you have read about the victory last week in the Israeli Supreme Court regarding al-Walaja – the East Jerusalem village in which the homes of 38 Palestinian families have been under demolition orders.
The State of Israel deems the houses to have been built illegally because the owners had not received construction permits. But the residents of al-Walaja cannot apply for permits because there is no zoning plan for the village. And Israeli authorities have refused to create a plan. What’s more, when the residents of al-Walaja submitted their own plan, the Jerusalem Local Planning and Building Committee rejected it.
It was clear to us that American diplomatic pressure was needed to help the residents of al-Walaja preserve their homes. APN worked with our closest allies on Capitol Hill and asked them to sign and send a letter to Secretary of State Antony Blinken, urging the Biden administration to call on Israel to immediately freeze all demolition orders in al-Walaja.
This is APN at its best – identifying an opportunity to open a path to a peaceful resolution in the conflict and working with colleagues and community to use the right channels to get the results we want and need.
On March 30, the Israeli Supreme Court ruling halted the demolition plans – giving the residents of al-Walaja six more months to come up with an agreed-upon zoning plan.
The powerful voices of our closely allied Congressional leaders – Rep. Jan Schakowsky, Rep. Jamie Raskin, Rep. Mark Pocan, Rep. David Price and Rep. John Yarmouth – along with 45 additional Members, were instrumental in stopping the demolitions and ensuring that over 300 Palestinian residents in the village get to stay in their homes.
When you support APN, you make efforts like this possible. We are grateful to all the Members of Congress who signed the letter to Secretary Blinken and helped stop the al-Walaja demolitions. And we are grateful to you for your partnership and support in helping us do our important work.
Please make a gift to APN today to help us continue to help the residents of al-Walaja – and all who live in Israel-Palestine – find a peaceful resolution to the conflict.