This coming Sunday, 13 May 2007, the Israeli High Court of Justice will hear the petition brought on behalf of Al-Haq, Defence for Children International – Palestine Section and the residents of al-Nu’man village. The petition seeks to defend the human rights of the villagers and alleviate the inhuman living conditions to which they are currently subjected, by virtue of a litany of impositions inflicted upon them by the respondents to the petition (namely the Israeli Prime Minister, Minister of Defence, Minister of Interior, the Municipality of Jerusalem and the Commander of the Israeli military forces in the West Bank).
In brief, the lives of the residents of al-Nu’man have been severely adversely affected by Israeli settlement construction and expansion in the area, the construction of the Annexation Wall (which has cut the village off from the rest of the West Bank), as well as the planned construction of a ring road to connect settlements to Jerusalem directly through the village, and the planned construction of a military base on the southern side of the village. These facts are compounded by prison-like restrictions on access to and from the village, and the position of the Israeli authorities that the land of the village falls within the municipal boundaries of (unlawfully) annexed East Jerusalem; but the residents do not and are thereby "illegally present" in Jerusalem simply by being in their own homes.
Should this dire situation be allowed to perpetuate, the likely end result will be will be the indirect transfer of al-Nu’man’s inhabitants away from the village. It is for this reason that the current petition has been brought. An unofficial English translation of the petition is now available on Al-Haq’s and can be accessed at: http://www.alhaq.org/pdfs/Petition%20HCJ-1960-07.pdf . It must be noted that the petition in no way alters Al-Haq’s position on the illegality of Israel’s construction of settlements and the Wall in the West Bank, or its call for Israel to fulfil its obligations under international law to dismantle the Wall and end its occupation of the OPT. The petition is simply an effort to defend the rights of the people of al-Nu’man.