Jordan’s occupation of Jerusalem resurfaces amid property dispute

Jordan transferred documents to the PA regarding the Sheikh Jarrah neighborhood of Jerusalem, which Jordan occupied prior to the 1967 Six-Day War.

By World Israel News Staff

Jordanian Foreign Minister Ayman Safadi paid a surprise visit to Ramallah Wednesday to discuss documents supplied by Jordan to the Palestinian Authority relating to claims of Palestinian ownership of property in Jerusalem, Channel 20 reported.

The Jordanian Foreign Ministry announced that it had provided the Palestinian embassy in Amman with historic documents that Jordan says prove ownership and rights of the residents of properties and homes in the the Sheikh Jarrah neighborhood of the capital.

Jordan controlled the eastern part of Jerusalem until the 1967 Six Day War and the Ministry said it forwarded historical documents to the PA including the leases for residences in Sheikh Jarrah, contracts, correspondence, records and statements on behalf of the residents.

At least one of the homes was owned by Jews who fled when Jordanian forces captured that part of the city during Israel’s War of Independence in 1948.

Jordan also provided the Palestinian embassy in Amman with a copy of an agreement signed between the Jordanian Ministry of Construction and Development and the United Nations (UNRWA) in 1954, after workers searched the archives in the Jordanian capital looking for 60-year-old documents.

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“As early as 2019, copies of all the documents found in this matter were provided to the Palestinian Embassy in Amman, at the request of the Palestinian Authority,” said Foreign Ministry spokesman Daifallah Al-Fayez.

The statement added that “the official records of the Ministry of Construction and Development in the Kingdom of Jordan prove, after an in-depth examination, that in 1956 leases were signed for housing units with some of the residents of Sheikh Jarrah.”

The Jordanians claim that Israel is trying to “expel Palestinians from their homes and lands and violate their rights,” and the documents are intended to help the Arab residents fighting the Jerusalem municipality’s development plans.

According to Jordan, 28 families were given homes in 1956 with tenancy for 33 years, adding ownership of the land remained in the hands of the Jordanian guardian. However, the Jerusalem District Court recently rejected several appeals against eviction orders for eight Palestinian families still living there.

The report noted that several months ago, Turkey passed a microfilm containing what it claimed were hundreds of documents of ownership of Muslim property in Jerusalem’s Old City. Turkey, in the form of the Ottoman Empire, controlled the area until it was defeated in World War I, although Turkish President Erdogan recently claimed that Jerusalem is “our city.”