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Palestinian Grassroots Anti-apartheid Wall Campaign

Beit Iksa: the making of another ghetto

Last Wednesday, the farmers in Beit Iksa were issued confiscation orders by the Occupation. This amounts to the theft of another 600 dunums of land from the village will be used to build the Wall. According to the village council, this land contains a large number of olive trees, almonds and grapes. For most of the people in Beit Iksa, north-west Jerusalem, this produce is key aspect of their livelihood. This is all the more critical, as villagers have been barred from working inside Jerusalem and the Green Line in what is essentially an economic siege.



It will also isolate around 10,000 dunums behind the Wall. Between isolation, destruction and confiscation it will affect some 10,600 dunums of village land. The dimension of the dispossession is massive, considering that the original land of the village was 16,000, including residential areas.



The mayor points out that this military order is a catastrophe to the village and the people. “They want to turn the village into a prison. They want us to emigrate or to expel us. What will make people stay if they lose everything?”



The maps attached to the confiscation orders show that the Wall will surround the village from the north and extend west for a total length of 6 kilometers.



The case of Beit Iksa is a clear example of the role the Israeli judicial system plays in the construction of the Wall and the dispossession of our people. In the first plans, this village was supposed to be isolated by the Wall. However, the “generous” decisions of the Occupation courts ordered the path to be changed to ensure less Palestinians would fall into what has to become greater Jerusalem. So they amplified the ghetto built to surround the villages north-west of Jerusalem to include Beit Iksa, which now is cut off from almost all its lands and choked by the Apartheid Wall.



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