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Settlers prevent Bethlehem farmers from reaching their land
Published Wednesday 23/10/2013 (updated) 30/10/2013 13:39
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(MaanImages/Ahmad Tnoh)
BETHLEHEM (Ma'an) -- Israeli settlers and military forces prevented dozens of Palestinian farmers from reaching their land east of Bethlehem on Wednesday.

Armed settlers assaulted villagers from Tuqu while Israeli soldiers stood by and prevented them from reaching their land to harvest olives, a Ma'an reporter said.

Head of Tuqu village council Taysir Abu Mifreh said that settlers from Noqedim also used dogs to intimidate Palestinian farmers.

A confrontation developed between settlers and farmers, with Israeli soldiers intervening on behalf of the settlers, locals said.

Ziad Numan, head of the municipality of Janata village, and Naser Sbeih, a tractor driver, were arrested.

No injuries were reported.

According to a 2012 report on Israeli settler violence released by the Palestine Center, a Washington-based nonprofit, every year the olive harvest period sees the highest peak in attacks on Palestinian civilians and property.

In 2012, settlers damaged or destroyed over 7,500 olive trees between January and October, according to OCHA.

The olive industry supports the livelihoods of roughly 80,000 families in the occupied West Bank.






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1 ) Rene / US
24/10/2013 09:00
Sorry I am so ignorant but don't Palestine officials invite foreign delegations to come to Palestine to see for themselves what things are like in Palestine and what is done there; not NGO's but government delegations from western countries? Are they invited. Do they come?

2 ) Rene / US
24/10/2013 09:07
Now I've scrolled down and see Delegation from Japan to Palestine and Italian Delegation coming. I look forward to becoming informed.

3 ) Florence Steichen / USA
26/10/2013 01:49
It is the same thing over and over. Israeli soldiers protect the settlers who harass the Palestinian farmers, and the US does not put pressure on the government of Israel. One would expect that the US special relation, including more than $3b in annual aid would give us plenty of leverage, but we do not use it. Very sad. The olive harvest is their life blood to the Palestinians.

4 ) Prof. Donald F. Megnin, PhD / USA
26/10/2013 15:25
How can we tolerate this criminal activity of Israeli settlers and troops blocking the right of the Palestinian owners to harvest their crops on their Land? When is this illegal occupation going to end and who is going to support the Palestinians in their quest to regain what has been stolen from them?

5 ) Sabra / Australia
29/10/2013 06:37
For a PhD Professor, Donald Megnin is sadly misinformed. It's not an illegal occupation, its land that was won fair & square in war. Since when has any country other than Israel been made to give back land won in war? Aside from which, Israel gave back the Sinai for peace with Egypt (which it got) and Gaza, unilaterally, in exchange for never-ending rocket fire. It would give back all the rest tomorrow if HAMAS changed its stated intention of throwing Israel into the sea.
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