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Palestinians outraged as Israel bulldozes historic Jerusalem cemetery

The cemetery is located in the Old City of Jerusalem [Getty]

Date of publication: 21 December, 2020

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Palestinians have expressed outrage as Israel continued to bulldoze the historic Shuhada Cemetery in east Jerusalem.
Israeli authorities on Sunday carried on with bulldozing works in the Shuhada (Martyrs) Cemetery in the Old City of Jerusalem.

Mustafa Abu Zahra, the head of the Islamic Cemeteries Committee, said in a statement to the media that Israel's Jerusalem Municipality was continuing to dig and bulldoze in the Shuhada Cemetery, which is part of the larger Yousufiya Cemetery.

He has previously described the works as a "flagrant violation of the sanctity of the site".

The remains of Iraqi and Jordanian soldiers who fought in past Arab-Israeli wars are buried in the cemetery.

Read also: Battle for Silwan - The Palestinian family fighting Israeli eviction in Jerusalem

The Israeli Municipality, which began the bulldozing works a few weeks ago, plans to build a park at the location of the Shuhada Cemetery. Israel occupied East Jerusalem following the 1967 Arab-Israeli war and its sovereignty there is not recognized by most of the international community.

The Mufti of Jerusalem and Palestine, Sheikh Mohammed Hussein, previously told the Anadolu news agency that the works were an "attack which was part of the Judaization of Jerusalem and an attempt to suppress the history and civilization" of the city.

Since Israel gained control over Palestinian East Jerusalem more than 50 years ago, it has tried to alter the character of the ancient city by building Jewish settlements there in violation of international law and demolishing Palestinian homes and facilities.

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