New Palestinian tactic: Construct by night, seek permit by day

Lately, Palestinians are using a new strategy in order to establish illegal facilities in the West Bank. First, they construct quickly during the night and then they appeal to the Israeli Supreme Court not to demolish the facilities.
Illegal Palestinian construction Photo credit: Wisam Hashlamoun/ Flash 90

During the past weekend, an improvised Palestinian school was constructed in a quick and overnight operation. The school was built in Area C in the West Bank, which is under Israeli sovereignty. The next day, children were already brought to celebrate the inauguration of the school.

This operation is an example of a growing phenomenon. First, construction is done illegally during the night and then a request is made to the Israeli Supreme Court to prevent the destruction of the facilities. It is estimated that at least 10 buildings were built this way.

Photo credit: Wisam Hashlamoun/ Flash 90

In most cases, the construction is done at strategic points. “They assume that the court will refuse to grant demolition permits to an operating school,” stated a member of Israeli NGO Regavim.

“We are using all available tools to act quickly against attempts to build illegally,” stated the Civil Administration. “In many cases, this immediate response prevents the establishment of these buildings. However, the phenomenon of expediting construction while simultaneously appealing to the court makes enforcement difficult.”

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