‘Ownership is Ours’: Sheikh Jarrah Families Refuse ‘Protected Tenants’ Deal by Israeli Supreme Court

Protests against an Israeli court’s ruling against Palestinian Sheikh Jarrah residents in May coincided with violence elsewhere in Jerusalem during Ramadan, including the storming of Al-Aqsa Mosque by Israeli police, which together helped set off 11 days of rocket bombardments by Hamas and airstrikes in Gaza by the Israeli Air Force.

On Monday, the Israeli Supreme Court postponed its ruling on an appeal to a lower court’s decision to allow four Palestinian families to be evicted from their homes in the East Jerusalem neighborhood of Sheikh Jarrah, saying it had not sufficiently heard arguments from both sides of the case.

During the hearing, which has been anticipated for months, the court suggested the families become “protected tenants” of Nahalat Shimon, the Jewish settler organization awarded the land by a lower court.

However, the Palestinian families, together some 70 people, refused the offer.

“This means we’d have to concede ownership.This is something we definitively reject because the ownership is ours,” Alaa Salaymeh, one of the residents facing eviction, told Middle East Eye outside the courthouse after the court adjourned. “And we brought papers from Jordan that say the ownership is ours.”

Sami Ershied, a lawyer representing the Sheikh Jarrah families, told Al Jazeera that the proposal was unacceptable, but added it was “a good indication” that the judge did not reject their appeal out of hand.

“This entire country was established on…

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