Modifying the route of the Wall in Jayyous and Falamya
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Modifying the route of the Wall in Jayyous and Falamya

Occupation forces recently sent a military order to the village council of Jayyous for the confiscation of 427 dunums and 100 meters of land belonging to the villages of Jayyous and Falamya. This land will be used to modify the route of the Wall along the western side of the villages and will permanently seal the fate of the lands that will remain isolated on the other side.

The land that is to be confiscated lies on the western side of the Wall, effectively isolated from the farmers that depend on it. Two gates occasionally allow access to the land, although this is sporadic and under military control.

In the village of Jayyous, Occupation authorities plan to move part of the Wall west, which will return 2,408 dunums of the original 8,600 that were isolated. Of the 450 farmers who were dispossessed, 49 will regain lands. In addition, if the new route goes as planned, the two gates that gave farmers limited access to their land will be removed and not replaced.

The new location will destroy a further 427 dunums, in addition to the land that was ruined for the initial route. Along with the fruits and vegetables, local farmers have erected plastic greenhouses on 70 dunums of the targeted area. The loss of this will further compound the farmers suffering.

In the southwest of the village, the new route is set to annex around 200 dunums to the Zufin settlement. The Occupation administration had previously announced that they intended to expand the settlement, and it is clear that this will be undertaken on the confiscated land.

The modification scheme is not new, and in the past Occupation courts have issued decisions calling for the Wall to be moved in Bil’in and other localities. These decisions are often promoted as beneficial for the local communities and consumed internationally as an important step forward. However, such optimism is illusory, as the movement of the Wall merely returns a fraction of what was initially stolen. Further, these rulings serve to recognize the authority of the Occupation courts over Palestinian communities while deflecting attention from the ICJ decision against the Wall.