Carter: Sheikh Jarrah Evictions Are Against International Law

Former U.S. President visits weekly demonstration in the East Jerusalem neighborhood; decries 'injustice' against Palestinians.

Former United States President Jimmy Carter said on Friday that the eviction of Palestinians from their homes in Sheikh Jarrah is against international law.


Carter spoke at a weekly demonstration held in the East Jerusalem neighborhood by Israeli and Palestinian left-wing activists, protesting a Jewish takeover of Palestinian homes in East Jerusalem.

The former president gave his blessing to the activists for working together in a peaceful manner to protest "the injustice" caused by the evictions. Carter said he hoped the protesters achieve their goals for the sake of Israelis and Palestinians.

Carter added that the eviction of Palestinians from their homes might be in accordance with Israeli law, but is against international law.

Carter visited Sheikh Jarrah together with former Irish president Mary Robinson and Indian peace activist Ela Bhatt, as part of a delegation of former world leaders, The Elders, currently visiting Israel.

During the Elders' visit to the East Jerusalem neighborhood of Silwan on Thursday, carter criticized the Israeli occupation of the West Bank and said that East Jerusalem should be the capitol of a Palestinian state.

In the past week the Elders have visited Syria, Ramallah, Gaza, Egypt and Jordan. Carter, however, did not join the Elder's visit to Gaza on Saturday.

During their visit on Syria on Tuesday, Carter called for Israel to lift completely its blockade on the Gaza Strip. Despite the U.S. and the European Union's labeling of Hamas as a terrorist organization, The Elders met with exiled Hamas politburo leader Khaled Meshal, as Carter has done during previous regional visits.

Following their talks with Assad and Meshal, The Elders said people in the region have "very low expectations" that the current U.S.-led talks between Israel and the Palestinian Authority, which excluded Hamas, would succeed.