One of the families to be isolated by the Wall from the city of Bethlehem has been living in their old house for more than 40 years, renting it and its surrounding lands; the family has been working in agriculture and animal husbandry for their entire time. According to Ottoman lands law, which are still used by Occupation Forces, after a person works in a land for a certain period of time, that person becomes its owner. This means that the Jado family is now legally entitled to the land since they have been working on it for over 40 years.



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Fu'ad Jado works as an employee for the Palestinian Water Authority in Bethlehem. Fu'ad recounts that the Occupation Forces, during the invasion of Bethlehem in 2002, started leveling the lands near the Aida Refugee Camp, putting barbed wire in the lands near the entrance of the refugee camp where his family and another three families live. From the point on, Occupation Forces declared the area a "seam zone" where permits are required to enter or exit the area. Each member of the family needs his own permit, which must be renewed each month, and for some time now, the Occupation Forces have not been giving permits.



Jado says that the area suffers from isolation from the rest of Bethlehem; people who own the olive trees in the lands near their house and who are from Bethlehem cannot reach these lands to collect their olive trees. The residents in the area are deprived of receiving basic services, as they have water problems. When one member of the family is sick, they have to go through extreme difficulties before reaching the hospital, which is especially an issue for the elderly and children. From time to time, Occupation Forces demand that the families leave the area, the last time being when Occupation Forces started installing concrete blocks in front of Jado's house. The Occupation Administration officer went to the family's house and told them that they must evacuate it. The family emphasized that they have been living there for tens of years and they have no intention of leaving.



Jado tells about the impacts of the Wall that is being built in front of their house:



"Now we need an hour or more to pass through the Wall. The Wall guards force us to wait for a long time until they let us in or out, many times they would tell us to walk through the fields to reach the house so that we do not pass from where they are working. We do not go a lot to Bethlehem now, we go each three days or sometimes each week, because of the Occupation soldiers measures on the Wall. Our neighbor's daughter asks us to come take her each time she is coming back from school because she is afraid of the guards of the Wall. I do not let my children play in that area anymore."



"I have twins, a boy and a girl, who go to school in Bethlehem; I do not know what we will do if the Wall is completed and we are completely isolated. The Occupation Administration officer came and took the documents for the land and the house, he said he will bring them back but he did not. Sometimes they come and tell us to leave but we are determined to stay. We love what we have here, this area is beautiful and quiet - this land is like a sanctuary for our family, because my mother lives here and all my brothers and sisters who live in Bethlehem come to visit her here."












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