Jerusalem: Excavations Blamed for Latest Silwan Collapse

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Jerusalem: Excavations Blamed for Latest Silwan Collapse
20 January 2010
Jerusalem – Ma’an – The Wadi Hilwah Information Centre reported another collapse in the Silwan neighborhood of occupied East Jerusalem on Monday, south of the Al-Aqsa Mosque compound in the Old City, creating a 12 meter square hole in the middle of Wadi Hilwah street. Jawad Siam, head of the information centre, said that the latest collapse in Wadi Hilwah took place over a 10 meter deep tunnel and is a few meters from the previous cave in at the beginning of January, as a result of Israeli excavations in the area. A child was injured and a vehicle fell ithrough the site, Siam said, adding that the local Al-Ein mosque, where Israeli excavation has intensified, was flooded as rainwater seeped into the collapsed site. The al-Quds Centre for Economic and Social rights said that this incident follows a number of similar collapses in Silwan recently, pointing out that last year, a collapse occurred in a girls’ school, injuring 17 students. On 2 January 2010 The al-Aqsa Foundation for Endowment and Heritage reported another street collapse on the main road of Silwan. "The collapse created a hole, two meters long and one and a half meters deep," according to a statement from the foundation, which oversees the al-Aqsa Mosque compound. According to the foundation, the collapse was related to ongoing excavations by Israeli authorities in the vicinity, apparently on tunnels extending underneath the neighborhood about 700 meters from the mosque compound. Authorities recently removed quantities of dirt and rocks from under Silwan to undisclosed locations, the statement said. Original Source

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