Friday, November 30, 2007

Tuwani's Mosque

RELEASE: Demolition Order Issued for Mosque in at-Tuwani

November 26, 2007

On November 26th, at 2:30pm, an Israeli army jeep and a white pickup truck, belonging to the Israeli District Coordination Office* (DCO), drove into the village of at-Tuwani and left an order for the demolition of the village mosque.

Israeli officials did not speak with anyone from the village. They placed the written order under a stone near the mosque and then drove out of the village. The demolition order gives the villagers five days to either demolish the building themselves or obtain an Israeli court ruling to suspend the order.

The villagers built a mosque in 1987, but the Israeli military demolished it that same year. Although they were unable to obtain building permission from the Israeli authorities, the villagers decided to rebuild their mosque at the end of 2006. In May 2007 the Israeli authorities issued a 'stop building order' for the mosque. This order generally precedes a demolition order.

At the time of this writing the villagers have not decided on their response to the demolition order.

Demolitions orders have also recently been issued for two homes in the village of Imneizil, close to the Green Line and the route of the southern section of the separation barrier.

* The DCO is part of the Civil Administration, the section of the Israeli army that deals with Palestinian civilian affairs in areas of the occupied Palestinian territories under Israeli control.

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