Wednesday, August 13

Newly homeless in Jaffa

Fauziyeh Dake, in her late forties, fainted when her teenage son Salim wanted to explode himself with a cooking gaz container in the centre of their living-room this morning, the moment the municipality goons and special police forces came to demolish the family's home in "Pardes Dake" in Jaffa.

One of the older sons of the family was murdered some 3 years ago in the infamous "Benny the Fisherman" murder case. Since then the family's youngest son, Salim, finds it hard to get organised and to live a regular life.
The family has been fighting a legal battle over the last 6 years against the demolition order that the Tel Aviv municipality took out on their only home.
The Dake orange grove, located in the center of Jaffa and Bat Yam's urban sprawl, is privately owned land by Jaffa's Dake family. According to the city development plan the grove, home to the large Dake clan, is considered agricultural land.
As a result there is no building plan and as a result of that, one cannot get a building permit. However, the grove stopped being a grove ages ago and the land is home to the large Dake clan.
Who cannot legally build any homes on it, because it still is "agricultural land".
Mousa Dake successfully fought a legal battle when the court decided it is in fact illegal for the municipality to take out demolition orders for homes in the pardes, but that decree did not help Fauzieh and her husband, Abu Jalal Dake, whose demolition order preceded that decree (appealed by the municipality in the supreme court). The municipality did not bother to inform them of the approaching demolition (which they should have, in writing) and took them by surprise. As a result nothing could be done to prevent the disaster. Destroying a family's only home is an act of extreme violence.
The illegal procedure used by the Tel Aviv municipality should not come as a surprise; If they would have warned the family, they could and would have gone to court and stood a good chance to win, given the new decision on the grove. But there are other interests.

Part of the Dake family reportedly signed agreements to sell their homes to a wealthy land developer, Samuel Flato Sharon, who wants to destroy the existing homes and build another closed compound for the wealthy. Fauziyeh and her family did not sign such an agreement. Many other families don't either.
Many of the families who did not sign, have received demolition orders. Is there a connection there? Hard to prove but a question that needs to be asked.

Although the answer comes too late for Fauzieh and her family. Where can they go? Where can they stay? What will the future hold for them?

Salim, the youngest is supposed to be under house arrest. The only question is where? He doesn't have a house any longer....


e.e. said...

I'm confused about Yaffo right now, I don't really know what the big picture is, especially as the Mitcham Noga seems to be developing at a high pace. It's the "next thing" as many planners promise, and good for students too. Not just the very rich looking for an authentic experience: regular people and artists live there, there is local colour and activities, music and shows.
This does not discount the suffering of your friends of course, who have been illegally evicted without warning.
What I'm saying is that Yaffo seems quite a mixed bag lately.

yudit said...

Mitham Noga is a completely gentrified almost exclusively Jewish area in northern Jaffa.

Only wealthy students can afford the 700$ (and upwards) one room studios over there.

Music and shows? Artists? How mmany of them are Arabs? How much of the music is Arab or Mizrahi? Give me a break.

Gentrification coming at the expense of the local (the true "regular" people, those who always lived there and their children , who would like to live there when they grow up) people is, in my eyes, bad.
Noga is a "cute" example.

e.e said...

"Give me a break."
Where would you like it??

Seriously though, I think I'll stay in little old uneventful Givatayim. The reports from Jaffa lately are quite scary.
And the pool - what a scandal...