al-Walaja

Friday 25th of August, al Walaja has continued its resistance to defend its existence with a mass protest to protect their homes from Israeli demolition. Hundreds of Palestinians gathered after Friday prayers at the village mosque, west of Bethlehem city.

A group of more than 60 Palestinian youths participated in a trip to the village of al Walaja, to the west of Bethlehem, on Friday 15th June 2012 in order to reach out to the local community and to enhance the Palestinian presence in the area which has experienced much land confiscation, settler violence and repression by the Israeli Occupation Forces (IOF) over the years.

Probably the oldest olive tree of the world is in Al Walaja village of Bethlehem district.

Two diferent groups of Japanese and European experts dated Al Badawi (The Big One), as the Palestinians calls it, between 4,000 and 5,000 years old, making it the oldest olive tree in the world.

Al Badawi currently is in danger, as the Israeli government is building the Wall arround this village, which once the Wall is finished will be completely surrounded by it.

Al-Walajah village is located to the southwest of the city of Jerusalem, with a population of about 2,500. In 1948, the al-Walajah people were displaced. Today, the village is threatened with total destruction as Israel continues to construct the Apartheid Wall directly through al-Walajah. On August 13, 2011, nearby villagers along with volunteers gathered at the old al-Walajah village to rebuild the abandoned houses after the 1948 Nakba and to honor the old land, on which ancient olive trees still grow.

 

Stop the Wall repression report: Dec 13 – Dec 27

These reports, previously released weekly, will now be released twice a month. Within each report, we will provide a brief analysis of the trends in repression occurring in the villages as well as providing statistics about injuries and arrests. We will also provide testimony from Palestinians affected during these demonstrations.

 

Mazin Qumsiyeh, coordinator of the popular committee against the apartheid wall and the settlements in Beit Sahour and professor at Bethlehem and Birzeit Universities, tells the story of his arrest:

The Occupation's policy to transform Bethlehem into a ghetto where normal life is impossible makes popular resistance the only way forward. Protests against the Wall and the settlements are ongoing in al Ma'sara, al-Walaja, Jub ath-Thib, Beit Jala, Beit Sahour and Wadi Rahal.

Below a two videos chronicling the the popular resistance in Beit Jala and al-Walaja.

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