Emek Shaveh and a group of Silwan residents have filed with Israel’s Supreme Court a petition against the Nature and Parks Authority (NPA) to prevent closure of “Area G” in the City of David archaeological site, located in the Palestinian village of Silwan just south of the Old City. According the the petition, together with extreme-right settlers backed by the Elad foundation, the NPA has been closing off public and archaeological areas previously open to all residents and visitors.
This petition has been appended to the one submitted to the Supreme Court by Emek Shaveh earlier this year regarding the tunnel connecting the Givati Parking Lot excavations and the Davidson Center in the Old City. “In both cases we have witnessed an attempt to expand control by the NPA and Elad of public areas or areas that are not their responsibility,” Emek Shaveh has written in the petition.
“It is the duty of the Nature and Parks Authority to care for the antiquities and historical sites for the benefit of all citizens, and not turn national parks into a tool for land expropriation and dispossession of residents. We hope that the Supreme Court will stop the takeover of Area G, and that it will oblige the NPA and Elad to submit their development plans and explain how they are consistent with the needs of the village.”