Occupation Forces are deploying new tactics as they finalize the Apartheid Wall project within the Jordan Valley. Deep trenches across the western limits of the Valley have been constructed to shut Palestinians out from their farms and pastures. It comes as part of the Occupation attempt to cleanse the Valley of Palestinians and secure the ghettoization of villagers to the east. The trenches expand over many kilometres to prevent Palestinians residing in the eastern hills overlooking the area from accessing their lands.
In the northern Jordan Valley, between Tubas and Beit Dajan, the trench system has been completed. A five kilometre long trench has been dug to bar Palestinians from their farmland in Sahel Libqeâa. The trench is intersected with two gates â for the use of the Occupation Forces only – and ends in the south at the Hamra checkpoint. This is one of the main checkpoints in the Valley and has been used for the last 5 months as a means to restrict Palestinian movement, and cut the Valley off from the rest of the West Bank. Mirroring the cement Walls to the East, the Occupation is using a myriad of forms such as trenches, gates, settler roads and checkpoints to achieve the goal of annexing the Jordan Valley.
Sahel Libqeâa extends over an area of 20,000 dunums and has been used by some 12,000 farmers for the cultivation of wheat and plants for animal fodder and, during summer time, as grazing ground for cattle. The cultivation and usage of the land was the main source of livelihood to families in Tammun as well as in the neighbouring communities of Himsa, Libqeâa, ar-Ras al-Ahmar and Atouf. Access to the area had already been difficult as farmers or shepherds faced regular beatings and the confiscation of their sheep. The new trench ensures Palestinian land remains off-limits to its owners in order to facilitate further Zionist expansion in the Valley. (For more see The Eastern Wall: Closing the circle of our ghettoization). This will lead to the cleansing of Palestinian communities from the fertile Valley and dissecting the area from the rest of the West Bank.