Jerusalem24 – A group Israeli experts on international human rights law, have filed an application to submit an amicus curiae brief in the first High Court case concerning an eviction application brought by settlers against a Palestinian family from Batan al-Hawa in Silwan. This case could have implications for hundreds of other residents facing eviction.
The amicus curiae brief prepared by the prominent Israeli experts on International Law, Prof. Eyal Benvenisti, Prof. Orna Ben Naftali, Dr. Natalie Davidson and Prof. David Kretzmer, represented by Adv. Michael Sfard and Adv. Hagai Benziman, is relevant to other eviction applications in Silwan and in Sheikh Jarrah where over 1000 people are at risk of being displaced by settlers. The opinion presents hitherto unheard arguments rooted in international human rights law.
According to the brief, the Palestinian residents’ human right to housing, includes a right to continue living in properties that have served as their homes for decades, and that they have developed certain property rights to these homes. The brief addresses an approach that has emerged in international jurisprudence on human rights law which puts an emphasis on group vulnerability of occupants facing eviction and institutional, systemic discrimination against them. Where these are present, in certain circumstances, the occupants’ rights, stemming from the human right to housing and specifically, to live in their home and their family’s home – trump the right of the original owner or their substitute to regain possession of the property.