The denial of adequate housing and the demolition of Palestinian homes violates international human rights instruments to which Israel is signatory. These include:
A demolition in Beit-Umar
The Universal Declaration of Human Rights, which states:
"Everyone has the right to a standard of living adequate for the health and well-being of himself and his family, including food, clothing, housing ... " (Article 25.1);
The International Covenant on Economic, Social, and Cultural Rights which "recognize[s] the right of everyone to an adequate standard of living ... including adequate food, clothing, and housing..." (Article 11.1);
The International Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination, which obligates State Parties "to ... guarantee the right of everyone, without distinction as to race, color, or national or ethnic origin, to equality before the law ... in particular:... (iii) The right to housing" (Article 5);
The Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women, which requires that women "enjoy adequate living conditions, particularly in relation to housing, sanitation, electricity and water supply..." (Article 14.2h).
Hague Regulations annexed to Hague Convention No. IV. Respecting the Laws and Customs of War on Land, 1907
The pillage of a town or place...is prohibited.
Family honor and rights, the lives of persons, and private property, as well as religious convictions and practice, must be respected.
Pillage is formally prohibited.
Geneva Convention IV Relative to the Protection of Civilian Persons in Time of War, 1949 Article 27:
Protected persons are entitled, in all circumstances, to respect for their persons, their honor, their family rights...
The High Contracting Parties specifically agree that each of them is prohibited from taking any measure of such a character as to cause physical suffering...of protected persons in their hands. This prohibition applies...whether...by civilian or military agents.
Pillage is prohibited.
Reprisals against protected persons and their property are prohibited.
The Occupying Power shall not deport or transfer parts of its civilan population into the territory it occupies.
Any destruction by the Occupying Power of real or personal property belonging individually or collectively to private persons, or to the State, or to other public authorities, or to social or co-operative organizations, is prohibited, except where such destruction is rendered absolutely necessary by military operations.
The Interim Agreement (or Oslo II) also contains provisions which prohibit changing the status of the West Bank and Jerusalem.
I. Relevant sections from Israeli-Palestinian Interim Agreement on the West Bank and the Gaza Strip: Washington, September 28, 1995 ("Oslo II"):
The Government of the State of Israel and the Palestine Liberation Organization (hereinafter "the PLO"), the representative of the Palestinian people;...[r]eaffirming their determination to put an end to decades of confrontation and to live in peaceful coexistence, mutual dignity and security, while recognizing their mutual legitimate and political rights;...
Hereby Agree as follows:
Article XI (1):
The two sides view the West Bank and the Gaza Strip as a single territorial unit, the integrity and status of which will be preserved during the interim period.
Israel and the Council shall exercise their powers and responsibilities pursuant to this Agreement with due regard to internationally-accepted norms and principles of human rights and the rule of law.
Neither side shall initiate or take any step that will change the status of the West Bank and the Gaza Strip pending the outcome of the permanent status negotiations.
Annex I [to Oslo II]:
Protocol Concerning Redeployment and Security Arrangements, Article XII:
Security Arrangements Concerning Planning, Building and Zoning
Provisions regarding the West Bank:
Subject to the provisions of this Agreement, the Palestinian police and the Israeli military forces shall exercise their powers and responsibilities pursuant to this Agreement with due regard to internationally-accepted norms of human rights and the rule of law, and shall be guided by the need to protect the public, respect human dignity and avoid harassment.
Annex III [to Oslo II]
Protocol Concerning Civil Affairs, Appendix I, Article 27:
Planning and Zoning: