UN demands Israel cease demolitions of Palestinian homes
In 2011 Israel demolished 622 Palestinian homes in the West Bank. This is a dramatic rise and the demolitions displaced about 1,100 people many of them children.
A UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs report claims: "The current policy and practice of demolitions cause extensive human suffering and should end," Many more people remain under threat of demolition of their houses in the future.
For its part, Israel says it only demolishes structures that have been built without required permission. The problem is that Palestinians have difficulty getting building permits and rarely are able to get them.
On the 23rd of January bulldozers and troops arrived in the middle of the night in the village of Anata that is close to Jerusalem. 52 people were evicted from their homes which were then destroyed. Included in the destruction was a peace center that was destroyed for the fifth time since 1994. Again Israelis simply say that that destroyed homes lacked a building permit. For more see this article..