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Settler-colonists continue to invade Thawamin and conduct prayers there with the Israeli army’s compliance – the army tried to expel Palestinian landowners who live there on their premises; settler-colonists from Ma’on, Mevo’ot Jericho and their outposts chase away Palestinian flocks with drones and loudspeakers, scaring pregnant sheep and goats so that they miscarry; the Israeli occupation forces demolished dozens of structures throughout the Palestinian territories this week
photo: South Hebron Hills 30/01/21
South Hebron Hills
Settler-colonist incursions into Thawamin persisted this week. On Sunday, Monday and Tuesday groups of settler-colonists came there to hold prayers. The Israeli army did not prevent them from entering an area that is officially closed to Israelis, and furthermore – on Friday and Saturday issued closed military zone edicts in order to prevent activists from arriving and supporting the Palestinian landowners living there. On these two days, soldiers tried to use the edict in order to expel the landowners from their homes and lands, and only a lawyer’s intervention kept this from happening.
As in other areas of the Occupied Territories, settler-colonists of ‘Ma’on’ and its outpost ‘Havat Ma’on’ use drones to scare sheep and goat flocks of Palestinian shepherds and disperse them. At this time of the year many of the sheep and goats are pregnant, and as a result of the flocks’ stampedes they miscarry. On Saturday, January 30, activists accompanied shepherds in this area, and the grazing went mainly unhampered , until a vehicle belonging to a settler-colonist from ‘Havat Ma’on’ arrived and called upon the army to chase the shepherds away.
On Saturday activists also accompanied Palestinian farmers to their lands near the outpost ‘Havat Taliya’ in order to plant trees. When they got there, they discovered that in the ground they had plowed and sown two weeks earlier, works had taken place with heavy equipment whose tracks led to the outpost itself. The landowners summoned police to lodge a complaint and document the damages, but then soldiers came, presented a closed military zone edict, and prevented the landowners from waiting for the police at the site, or plant in their own land.
The activists came to the track leading to Bir Al Eid, and removed rocks that settler-colonists of the outpost ‘Mitzpe Yair’ had placed in order to block it.
At the end of the day, a solidarity visit was held at Zanuta, where 14 demolition orders were issued this week for tents, sheep pens, community structures and the clinic that serves the villagers.
Palestinian Jordan Valley
In Auja too, in the southern Palestinian Jordan Valley, settler-colonists from ‘Mevo’ot Jericho’ and the nearby outpost were reported using drones to scare off flocks. On Thursday, January 28, activists accompanying shepherds grazing in the area witnessed such a drone in action. The next day, activists accompanied the shepherds again, and this time settler-colonists came out of the outpost and actually chased the shepherds away from some of the grazing grounds.
In the northern Palestinian Jordan Valley activists accompanied shepherds grazing near Farisiya on Monday, January 25. Settler-colonists came and claimed the land was theirs, and chased away the shepherds. Activists accompanying a shepherd at Hamra that day heard from him that ever since a new outpost was erected in the area, settler-colonists have been chasing him and throwing stones at his flock nearly every day.
On Tuesday the activists accompanied shepherds around En Al Hilwa and grazing went unhampered. On Wednesday they came back to Farisiya, but the rain prevented grazing. During the week, settler-colonists were reported confiscating a cow belonging to Palestinian shepherds in the Umm Zuka area. They also burnt the tent serving shepherds, while the latter were away. It was also reported that settler-colonists bring their flocks to Palestinian fields and eat up the wheat that has sprouted there.
Throughout the occupied territories and Jerusalem
A vast wave of demolitions throughout Palestine: on Monday the occupation forces demolished 3 structures in Luban A-Sharqiya (Nablus district) and another in Nabi Elias (Qalqiliya district). On Tuesday 9 structures were demolished in Hamam Al Malih in the northern Palestinian Jordan Valley. On Wednesday, January 27, the occupation forces demolished 3 structures in Umm Qusa (South Hebron Hills) including the initial construction of a mosque, and confiscated a tin outhouse at Rakiz. The same day, Wednesday, they demolished 5 structures in Tayibe (Ramallah district) and 3 at Al Muntar, Bir Al Maskoub and Khan Al Ahmar east of Jerusalem. On Thursday the forces came to the central Palestinian Jordan Valley and demolished 5 structures at Wadi Al Ahmar, and 10 more structures, 3 of them dwellings, at Fasail.
In the Jerusalem area this week, the occupation forces demolished 3 structures – in Issawiya, Walaje and Anata.
The weekly protest in Sheikh Jarrah takes place every Friday. The residents of Sheikh Jarrah are protesting their violent evictions from their homes, the taking over of the neighborhood by the settlers, and the Judaization of East Jerusalem. They call upon each and every person who supports their struggle to join them.
We will meet at the Sheikh Jarrah Garden, Nablus Road and Dahlmann St. at at 3 p.m