The Palestinian Shuafat Refugee Camp, in Occupied East Jerusalem, and the town of Kafr Aqab, in the north of the city, will no longer be considered as falling within Jerusalem’s municipal boundaries, Israeli Jewish Channel 10 revealed on Sunday, according to Gulf News.
Channel 10 referred the news, which confirms long-held Palestinian suspicions of a systematic Israeli plan to ensure Jewish majority in the holy city, to security sources.
The move has been finalised by the Israeli national security council and will be implemented to coincide with the 50th anniversary of the Jewish occupation of the holy city.
According to Fakhri abu-Diyab, who heads the local committee in defence of the occupied Jerusalem, taking Shuafat camp and Kafr Aqab out of the municipal boundaries of Jerusalem will mean the Palestinians’ blue Jerusalem identity cards will be replaced with green West Bank cards.
He said Israel planned to set up a local council outside Jerusalem boundaries to run the two areas while reserving sole security control there.
A total of 140,000 Palestinians live in the two areas — 75,000 at Shuafat and 65,000 in Kafr Aqab.
Muneer Zughair, leader of the Jerusalem neighbourhoods’ committee, said residents of Shufat Refugee Camp and Kofr Aqab town were already suffering from a poor of municipal services and facilities and from frequent water shortages.
Residents of Kafr Aqab had sued the occupation municipality several times for failing to provide municipal services despite paying taxes to the Israeli government.
Israel occupied the eastern part of Jerusalem in the 1967 and annexed it in the early 1980s. Israel wants a united Jerusalem as its eternal capital, and has been forcibly displacing Palestinians to take over the holy city entirely.
Palestinian Authority, Arab governments and the international community see occupied East Jerusalem as the capital of their future Palestinian state.