US blasts Israel for home demolition of Palestinian activist in East Jerusalem

Jacob Magid is The Times of Israel's US bureau chief

The US lambasts Israel for demolishing the home of a Palestinian activist in East Jerusalem.

Israel demolished the home of Fakhri Abu Diab in Silwan earlier today, claiming it did not have the necessary permits, though, such building approvals for Palestinians in East Jerusalem and the West Bank are overwhelmingly rare.

US Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for Israeli and Palestinian Affairs Andrew Miller visited the home just last month in an apparent show of support for Abu Diab.

Asked about the demolition during a press briefing, US State Department spokesman Matthew Miller says the detrimental impact of the move is not just felt by Abu Diab’s family but also on his “entire community who live in fear that their homes may be next.”

Miller notes that Abu Diab’s family had lived in the home demolished for generations and that part of the building’s structure dates back before 1967 when Israel took over East Jerusalem.

“These acts obstruct efforts to advance a durable and lasting peace and security that would benefit not just Palestinians but Israelis,” Miller says.

“They damage Israel’s standing in the world, and they make it ultimately more difficult for us to accomplish all the things we’re trying to accomplish that would ultimately be in the interest of the Israeli people, and so we condemn them and will continue to urge that they not continue,” Miller says.

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