Home Occupation 30/November/2022 01:37 PM

Israeli settlers continue to level Palestinian land near Jericho

JERICHO, Wednesday, November 30, 2022 (WAFA) – Israeli settlers today continued to level Palestinian land to the east of al-‘Auja village, north of the occupied West Bank city of Jericho, according to a local activist.

Ayman Gharib, an anti-colonial-settlement activist, said that some 20 settlers razed some 60 donums of Islamic Waqf land, located between the nearby encroaching colonial settlements of Na’ama and Tzachi, to plant it.

He pointed that confiscated land is part of a large 100-donum tract of land that the settlers intend to raze and plant and annex it to the colonial settlements.

While Israel allows settlers to seize land, including for farming purposes, it has been severely restricting Palestinian access to water in al-‘Auja village and rest of the Jordan Valley, particularly that local water springs, including ‘Ein al-Auja (al-Auja spring).

Local water springs are susceptible to dryness as a result of Israel’s control over water. Israel have set up huge wells over the local hot water basins, reducing the quantity of water flowing from the spring and causing destruction to thousands of dunums of agricultural land irrigated by the water spring.

The Jordan Valley, which is a fertile strip of land running west along the Jordan River, is home to about 65,000 Palestinians and makes up approximately 30% of the West Bank.

Since 1967, when the Israeli army occupied the West Bank, Israel has transferred at least 11,000 of its Jewish citizens to the Jordan Valley. Some of the settlements in which they live were built almost entirely on private Palestinian land.

The Israel military has also designated about 46 percent of the Jordan Valley as a closed military zone since the beginning of the occupation in June 1967, and has been utilizing the pretext of military drills to forcefully displace Palestinian families living there as part of a policy of ethnic cleansing and stifling Palestinian development in the area.

Approximately 6,200 Palestinians live in 38 communities in places earmarked for military use and have had to obtain permission from the Israeli authorities to enter and live in their communities.

In violation of international law, the Israeli military not only temporarily displaces the communities on a regular basis, but also confiscates their farmlands, demolishes their homes and infrastructure from time to time.

Besides undergoing temporary displacement, the Palestinian families living there face a myriad restrictions on access to resources and services. Meanwhile, Israel exploits the resources of the area and generates profit by allocating generous tracts of land and water resources for the benefit of settlers.

Israeli politicians have made it clear on several occasions that the highly strategic Jordan Valley would remain under their control in any eventuality.


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