Occupation orders reveal settlement expansion in north Hebron district
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Occupation orders reveal settlement expansion in north Hebron district

Last Tuesday, 18th of April, Occupation Forces distributed three military orders to the people in Beit Ummar and Halhul, north Hebron district. The orders are aimed to ensure the expansion of the Karme Zur settlement which already separates the two villages and swallows their land. A Wall is to be built around the stolen land.

***image2***The first military order declared the confiscation of 25 dunums of land to build the Wall for Karme Zur settlement. The length of the wall will be 750 meters long and 15 meters wide. Villagers have reported that between 400-450 dunums of their land will be isolated behind the wall, and swallowed by the settlement. The second military order declared the isolated lands a closed military zone, while the third order prohibits any building on the land.

The lands to be isolated are planted with grapes and almonds and provide livelihoods to 30 families from Halhul, and 80-90 families from Beit Ummar. Meanwhile, Beit Ummar faces additional pressure from the north where the Apartheid Wall is to be built to enable the isolation of further Palestinian land and the expansion of the Gush Etzion bloc.

The municipality of Beit Ummar states that some 500-600 dunums of village land will be destroyed for the Wall’s footprint, with another 6000 dunums of land cultivated with grapes and almond trees isolated behind the Apartheid Wall. Gush Etzion’s growth to the south – and the fortification and expansion of Karme Zur – shows the Occupation is preparing a secure passage for its settlements in Hebron city. Leading to further fragmentation of Palestinian towns and villagers, the Apartheid Wall project will reap devastation in the Hebron district as it does across the rest of Palestine.