Residents of the eastern Jerusalem neighborhood of Jabel Mukaber this week received a notice inviting them to participate in the general strike that was announced in the neighborhood in response to the demolition of illegal buildings there, as well as the government’s plan to demolish 12 more buildings in the near future. It also warns those who would not obey the strike.
The strike was announced by a group calling itself the as-Sawahira Clans. As-Sawahira ash Sharqiya is an Arab neighborhood in eastern Jerusalem, population 5,000. As-Sawahira ash Sharqiya shares its Israeli-funded schools and health facilities with Jabal Mukaber and ash-Sheikh Sa’d, two other Arab neighborhoods in eastern Jerusalem.
The as-Sawahira Clans’ leaflet reads: “O people of our nation standing on the land of al-Quds al-Sharif (Jerusalem). O people of the sturdy mountain. The occupation authorities are looking down on us. Their unjust decisions that go with the head against the wall don’t care for anyone.”
The leaflet continues: “Accordingly, the as-Sawahira clans and the youth movements in the town of Jabal Mukaber invite you to a general strike tomorrow, Tuesday, 01/31/2023. The strike includes all areas of life except medical centers, pharmacies, and other medical businesses.”
Finally, the leaflet threatens: “Whoever breaks the strike and does not abide by it will be dealt with firmly and forcefully. We will not allow the demolition of another house in our city.”
According to Kikar HaShabbat, many Jabal Mukaber residents have already alerted their employers that they are unable to come to work on Tuesday. They are mostly construction workers and bus drivers. So, expect fewer buses in Jerusalem on Tuesday, but also less construction work – maybe they’ll balance each other out.