Occupation forces are to confiscate more Palestinian land in order to build a continuation of the Apartheid Wall that will completely encircle the West Bank village of Azzoun Atme in south Qalqilya district. Confiscation orders have been issued to farmers in the village.
The wall’s footprint will destroy 16 dunums and isolate a further 500 dunums of agricultural land. Nine houses and seventy villagers will be cut off from Azzoun Atme in a no-man’s-land between the wall and ’48 land.
The land isolations are addition to 1500 dunums of agricultural land already cut off from the nearby villages of Mesa, Azauria and Siniria villages in 2004, meaning that in total 2000 dunums of land in the area will be isolated behind the wall.
The which will loop in a four kilometre stretch around Azzoun Atme from Shartikva in the South East to Ornit settlement in the North West near the 48 line, completely encircling the population of around 1500.
Since 2004, Azzoun Atme has been totally isolated from the rest of the West Bank by the apartheid wall. A gate in the north of the village is open at certain times, though access through it is restricted to those with permits issued by the Occupation authorities. Villagers using the gate are subjected to strict procedures and sometimes denied permission to bring in supplies such as gas, groceries and agricultural goods for ‘security reasons’. Two months ago, the gate was enhanced with additional checks and laser scanning equipment. Israeli forces conduct full body searches and sometimes require villagers to strip naked. Ambulances are not allowed to enter the village without a permit.
The 500 dunums that will be isolated behind wall contain 20 greenhouses, olive trees, citrus trees and fruit trees as well as an artisan well used for irrigation and animals which is used by all the surrounding villages.
The new part of the wall will connect to the wall coming from Ibut Tabib, to Beit Amin, Siniria and Mas’ha, and connect with the new part of the wall which runs from Shar Tikvah to Oronit settlements.