Forced Displacement

Days after STW has called upon supporters to write to their diplomatic misions, on November 23 diplomats from 7 European representative offices have visited al Hadidiye. They have seen the precarious living conditions now threatened by demolition orders affecting 72 people. They have heard testimonies from al Hadidiye and received a background briefing on the Israeli policies of ethnic cleansing of the Jordan Valley. (See below.)

 

The report The Palestinian Periphery is being published at a time when Israel’s settlement policy is once again in the headlines and condemned and lamented by governments and politicians across the world. This report is about the communities that are being displaced and dispossessed by Israel’s settlement project and its overall framework of colonization. It is about our people and the way Israeli policies have shaped our lives and social and political geographies.

The Palestinian Periphery shows the multifaceted methods of Israeli policies of ethnic cleansing and their impacts on our struggle, demonstrating that the people in what has become the ‘periphery’ are neither weak nor have they been historically marginalised. In fact, they have been pushed by Israel into isolation and are resisting under constant attack.

At the beginning of last week, Israeli forces have once again targeted heavily Palestinian Bedouin communities throughout the territory they control. In Um al-Hiran, in the Naqab, the demolitions have lead to the killing of a local school teacher and many injuries. In the Jordan Valley, in Khirbet at-Tawil, Israel continued its almost daily attacks against the Bedouin communities and villages located in Area C. Both cases attest to the cruel ethnic cleansing policy Israel is pursuing against the Palestinian Bedouin on both sides of the Green Line.

Israeli policies of holding military trainings in the middle of populated areas is Israel continues and has once again cost farmers their livelihoods. Every year the military organizes large scale military training on the land of the Palestinian farmers in the northern part of Jordan Valley. Usually these trainings take place during the summer, when the farmers are about to harvest their crops, but this time they started training at the beginning of the winter, when the farmers prepare the land for cultivation and plant the seeds. This means planting can’t happen and people will have nothing to harvest in the coming season.

It is 7:30 pm and the quiet has returned in the streets of Beit Ummar. The quiet, because today was a rough day and the inhabitants who left the city this morning to go to work had to go through much trouble to be able to get back. There were some tensions in Hebron. As usual.

Since a few months, the Israeli settlers are taking over more and more territory in the city. They already banned Palestinians from what they define as "their zone". 

The Israel forces destroyed today over 40 houses and structures in Tubas, a district in the Jordan Valley of the occupied West Bank. This week dozens of homes have been already destroyed in several locations in Area C, in particular in the Jordan Valley and the rampage is continuing.

 

After three weeks that the families of al Hadidiya have been sleeping out in the open, the resistance and campaigning has achieved a temporary respite: Israeli courts granted a freeze for the demolitions. Since Israeli military bulldozers entered the village on  November 25 the families have been holding out without shelter on their land. Now they have been able to erect again at least temporary tents. 

Abu Saqr, village elder of Al Hadidiya, is today in his sixties. He still remembers the times before Israel occupied the Jordan Valley in 1967 and has struggled with his community for decades to ensure their survival.

After the punitive demolitions on Thursday November 25 that affected some 50 people of al Hadidiya and their livestock, until today Israel is prohibiting and destroying any shelter for people or animals. Last night, the military tore away a plastic blanket people had put over their bodies to protect them from the rain. 

 

                                                                                                                              

Among the many faces of Occupation, daily demolitions play a relevant and devastating role of land theft and ethnic cleansing of the Palestinian people. Susiya is only one of the many examples: a village whose people live in constant fear of being ejected from their land and deported, as has already happened three times in the last thirty years. This policy is part of the two key overall plans of the Israeli administration: The ‘Relocation Plan’ aimed at clearing Area C in the West Bank from the Palestinian communities in order to prepare it for definitive annexation, as well as the Israeli master plan to ‘Judaize’ Jerusalem, the Galilee and the Naqab and the confiscation of large parts of the West Bank. 

On May 5th 2015, the battle to save Susya was met with a fatal blow as Judge Noam Sohlberg of Israel’s High Court of Justice rejected a petition for an interim order that would freeze the implementation of demolition orders until the case is heard in court. As a result, Susya and its 340 residents face imminent demolition and expulsion to Area A. This unusual move, whereby no hearing and inquest was granted, alludes to the idea that Israel is looking to destroy the village totally in the near future.

Today, May 4 2015, the Land Defense Coalition and the Jordan Valley Solidarity has submitted a letter to the EU Commission and diplomatic missions of member states asking for urgent action and denouncing the military exercises that Israel is holding to an unprecedented length and extent in the Jordan Valley occupied Palestinian territory. The organizations ask for clear actions, including the suspension of the EU-Israel Association Agreement and the immediate exclusion of Israeli military and security companies from the EU funding cycle Horizon2020.

Since Sunday morning at 4 am Israeli military is operating in a large area around Twayyel, in Aqraba area in the Jordan Valley. Large swaths of agricultural land and a good part of the people's harvest has already been destroyed while the operations defined by Israel as 'military training' are still ongoing. 

Israel has announced a four days military training with live ammunition in the northern Jordan Valley around the homes and farms of Palestinian communities home to 47 families in the northern Jordan Valley. As military convoys bring in shooting targets, rocket launchers and heavy machinery, the people on the ground ask for urgent protection. Continue reading for action information....

Israel is planning to forcibly relocate some 27,000 Bedouin living in 46 communities Area C in the occupied West Bank to three 'relocation' townships in order to prepare Area C (over 60% of the West Bank) for final annexation.

This factsheet gives the key data, an analysis on the political background and impact, ongoing Palestinian resistance to it and ideas on how you can help to stop this ethnic cleansing policy.

On January 2, Palestinian activists discovered the fields of Khirbet Twael where covered with different types of explosive devices. The discovery was made as they were implementing a land reclamation activity in the lands owned by many families from the villages of Aqraba and Khirbet Twael.

Te Palestinian company ASSIA Consulting Engineers has sent a letter to the Stop the Wall Campaign announcing their withdrawal from all of the projects to the Israeli civil administration in Bet Eil. The company further assures their commitment to work together against the expulsion of the Bedouin communities of the West Bank. This is a major step to unify the Palestinian efforts on the ground and to support the steadfastness of the Palestinian people on their land.

 

See a translation of the full text of the letter below.

 

The Israeli policies to ethnically cleanse the Palestinian Bedouin communities from the Jordan Valley and the area east of Jerusalem include the construction of three apartheid-style townships. Once expelled, these communities should be relocated there. However, in the last weeks Palestinian campaigners and Bedouin communities have made great advances to obstruct this plan: They have directly targeted the companies involved in the construction of the two townships currently being developed.

The Israeli military administration has published a new plan of expulsion of Bedouin families from their communities and to relocate them in new cities. This is tightening the threats to the Bedouin in the Jordan Valley and may form another step towards the fragmentation of the West Bank.

UN OCHA has published a detailed map on the Bdouin communities in the Palestinian hills east of Jerusalem that are currently resisting increasing threats of displacement by Israel. The communities are being ethnically cleansed in order to make place for the expansion of the illegal Israeli settlement project E1.

(28/05/14) Today, protesters gathered in front of the United Nations office in Ramallah in response to the latest wave of home demolitions that have displaced the Palestinian Bedouin community in Abu al Jaj. The demonstration aimed at breaking the silence of the United Nations and the international community as a whole as the ongoing ethnic cleansing of the Jordan Valley continues.

The Civic Coalition for Palestinian Rights in Jerusalem and the Birzeit University Institute of Law are pleased to announce release of the “Guidelines for Advocating for Palestinian Rights in conformity with International Law”. Tthis new advocacy tool is an outcome document of the conference “Options and Strategies of International Law for the Palestinian People” held at the Birzeit University Institute of Law in May 2013.

The campaign “You are not alone" launched by Palestinian grassroots Anti-Apartheid Wall Campaign (Stop the Wall) and the Palestinian Farmers Union was carried out for the ninth consecutive year.

 

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