Finalizing the ghettos: the Wall encages the Palestinian villages East of Jerusalem
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Finalizing the ghettos: the Wall encages the Palestinian villages East of Jerusalem

The occupation bulldozers started uprooting land located to the east of Abu Dis in their efforts to continue construction of the Wall.

In Eizariya, already last month bulldozers had started their destruction. The aim of this part of the Apartheid Wall – running from north to the west – is to isolate the villages of Eizarya, Abu Dis , Sawahreh and Sheikh Sa’ad from having access to the West Bank. A second wall is already blocking the access of the villages to Jerusalem. Both walls together strangle the villages into a hellish ghetto.

This new part of the wall will annex all the settlements west of the villages, such as Ma’ale Adumim, Qedar, Mishor Adumim. On parts of these lands heavy settlement expansion is planned.

Basam Bahar, a lawyer and representative of the village council of Eizarya, said both walls will completely isolate the area and destroy it. “The area is already suffering from high population density and contains 47 000 people. The situation will be more and more complicated when the Israelis start to apply their decision (announced last year) to collect all the Bedouins from the West Bank and to put them in Abu Dis. They are around 30,000 persons with animals. They will be settled in the last empty spaces left. In one or two years life will be impossible.”

When the wall will be complete, they will implement the E1 plan – a huge colonization plan that will bring the Zionist colonies from Jerusalem up to almost the border of Jericho. The plan will encroach on an additional 10,500 dunums of land from Eizawiye, Tour, Anata, Eizariye and Abu Dis. Three thousand five hundred new housing units are planned as part of E1. Additionally restaurants, hotels, commercial areas and a police station will occupy land. The tourism facilities in E1 are planned to host the pilgrims and tourists coming to visit Bethlehem and offer them all necessary services. This plan to ensure pilgrims will stay and fuel the economy in the settlements and go to Bethlehem merely for a short round trip to the Nativity church will further steal income from Bethlehem, which has been heavily relying on the tourism sector. The settlement industrial zone south east of Anata will be extended as well.

The destruction of Palestinian life in the villages east of Jerusalem forms a key part in the Apartheid Wall project. It allows the “Judaized Greater Jerusalem” to expand to the Jordan Valley. This will cut the West Bank effectively in half. The incorporation of ever more Jewish-only settlements into the Occupation Jerusalem municipality is further a part of the Zionist “demographic engineering” or ethnic cleansing that uses all means to ensure Palestinians are to be the minority in their land and their national capital.