The European Union has condemned an Israeli eviction of an Arab family in east Jerusalem.

On Wednesday, an East Jerusalem Palestinian family was evicted from its home that a court ruled had been purchased by Jews in the 1970s. The eviction, carried out by the Bailiff's Office with police back-up, gave Jewish residents complete control of three homes in the Beit Hanina neighborhood, paving the way for the first Jewish residential presence in the area. Israeli police evicted a family from a home in the Palestinian neighborhood of

Police spokesman Mickey Rosenfeld said the property belonged to Jewish owners.

The European Union missions in Jerusalem and Ramallah issued a joint statement Saturday announcing they "are deeply concerned by the plans to build a new settlement in the midst of this traditional Palestinian neighborhood."

Arieh King, who directs an organization that buys land for Jews in east Jerusalem, said Wednesday that about ten Israelis moved into the home. He has announced plans to take possession of other sites in Beit Hanina and the East Jerusalem neighborhood of Sheikh Jarrah, which would mean further evictions of Palestinians.

Beit Hanina is part of east Jerusalem captured by Israel in 1967 and which
Palestinians claim as the capital of their future state.