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Palestinian Grassroots Anti-apartheid Wall Campaign

Another Day in the North: More Land Confiscations and Settlement Expansion

Throughout the West Bank, the Occupation’s network of control and oppression is unceasing in its expansion. The Apartheid Wall, Jewish-only settler bypass roads, settlements and military zones are rapidly being constructed on land stolen from Palestinian villages. In Tulkarem district, recent weeks have seen the theft of thousands of dunums more land by the Occupation.



Confiscation Orders Issued for Expansion of Enav and Avne Hefetz Settlements:



As part of the Occupation’s relentless colonization policies, confiscation orders for more than 2,000 dunums have been issued to farmers in five villages in the northern West Bank in order to expand nearby settlements.



***image5***The five villages, located in southwest Tulkarem district –Kafr al Labad, Beit Lid, Shufa, Khirbat Hafasa and Ramin – have received orders confiscating some of their most fertile farmland. The area is part of what is known as the “fruit basket” of Palestine due to its rich soil and natural irrigation. The latest confiscations continue the Occupation policy of seizing this important area, along with its precious natural water resources.



The annexed land will be used by the Occupation to expand the nearby settlements of Enav and Avne Hefetz and for the construction of walls surrounding the villages. In addition to 134.6 dunums for the footprints of the walls themselves, 2,130 dunums of fertile village lands will be annexed to the settlements.



600 dunums are to be confiscated from Beit Lid for the expansion of Enav settlement, which will also annex 100 dunums from Ramin and 500 dunums from Kafr al Labad. A further 930 dunums of land from Kafr al Labad and Shufa, 114 of which are filled with olive trees, will be annexed by the settlement of Avne Hefetz.



Farmer Expelled From His Home Near New Bypass Road:



Occupation Forces are continuing expulsions of villagers as they expand the system of settler-only roads that are now dissecting the West Bank. A house on the outskirts of Shufa, owned by Saber Aref, a farmer from the village, has been confiscated.



The house is now encircled by a military zone stretching half a kilometre, set up on 500 dunums of confiscated village land. The Occupation has established a watchtower on the roof of Mr Aref’s house. The site has been annexed as part of the destruction caused by the new settler bypass road that is being built, linking the settlements of Qedumim and the Ariel “finger” bloc with Enav and Avne Hefetz to the north of Shufa. The road itself is being constructed on lands stolen from the surrounding villages.



Over 500 almond trees owned by Mr Aref and two other farmers, Fawaz Hanoun and Abed Al Lateef Hassan, were on the confiscated land, which is in an area of the village called Al Sir.





House Demolition Orders Re-affirmed In Far’un:



The Occupation’s ethnic cleansing programs are continuing in Far’un, where an Occupation court has ruled that ten Palestinian homes must be destroyed.



Two years ago, demolition orders were given for a series of ten houses, as well as two large animal shelters, for the construction of the Wall in Far’un, a village five kilometers south of Tulkarem. Two of the houses were immediately destroyed by the Occupation, with the others awaiting a confirmation decision by the Occupation court.



Now the Court has refused to hear the villagers’ appeal and the demolition orders for the remaining houses have been renewed.



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More Than 60 Dunums Uprooted For New Jubara Tunnel:



Occupation Forces have distributed confiscation orders for more than 167 dunums to villagers of Jubara, in order to build a tunnel that maintains the project of ghettoization implemented by the Apartheid Wall.



Isolated between the Wall and the Green Line, the village of Jubara has become a stand-alone ghetto cut off from the rest of the West Bank.



When completed, the gated tunnel will be the sole entrance and exit connecting Jubara with neighbouring villages, fields and markets. With the Occupation able to open and close the tunnel at will, such constructions maintain the Occupation's total control over the village. In similar cases elsewhere in the West Bank, tunnels have been built so narrow that cars and even donkey carts cannot pass through, thus perpetuating the prison system imposed by the Wall.



This infrastructure of Occupation control forces Palestinian villagers through tunnels as a new settler freeway - built on more land stolen from the village - passes directly over it. This road links the settlements in eastern Tulkarem district with the 1948 area to the west.



60 dunums have already been uprooted, destroying 520 almond and olive trees. One villager alone, Rashid Budair, has lost 100 dunums and 400 trees.



Throughout Palestine, villagers' lives and lands, trees and homes are being forced to make way for the Zionist colonization that is reshaping the landscape, destroying the cultural and historic heritage of Palestine, and expelling its people.



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