A Jew whose home in Peki’in in the Upper Galilee was burned down by local rioters has now been ordered to demolish the house or renovate it – without the government compensation due to a victim of nationalistic violence.
Asher Hazan who bought his home, which had been owned by Jews for generations, in Peki’in sixteen years ago, was recently astounded to discover that the local council demanded that he demolish his home that was burned down four months ago, or to renovate it at the cost of 350,000 NIS, since it presents a safety hazard. The arsonists have not yet been caught, and according to Hazan, the police are not doing anything to apprehend them, so as not to enrage the local Druze inhabitants. Hazan suspects that the fire is connected to an adjacent Druze house of prayer, whose leaders had unsuccessfully tried to persuade Hazan to sell his property in the past, in order to expand their house of worship. The police insist on calling the arson “a conflict between neighbors” rather than a nationalistically motivated incident, thus preventing government compensation.
Asher Hazan, who only wanted to live in a house that had been owned by Jews for many years and to have neighborly relations with the local Druze, is being forced to deal with an impossible situation – on one hand, the threat of demolition hovers over the building, which would result in the loss of his property, and on the other, he does not have the wherewithal to finance such an expensive renovation.
The Regavim movement has mobilized to help Asher Hazan, and contacted the various authorities in order to reach a solution. Regavim demands that the police investigate the arson, apprehend the criminals so that they may stand trial, and at the same time, recognize the fire as a nationalistic incident, thus allowing Hazan to receive fair compensation for the tremendous damage and aggravation that he has suffered.