Yesterday, dozens of people from Beit Ummar village in northern Hebron faced off with Israeli soldiers in a non-violent demonstration on their own land which is being confiscated for the Annexation Wall’s construction.
The protesters marched from Beit Ummar Municipality to their land in the North-west of the village, where settlement bloc Gush Etzion is expanding to annex village lands. Villagers defied confiscation orders and started to cultivate the lands in order to underline their determination not to relinquish it to the Occupation and to continue resistance against policies of isolation and dispossession.
A large number of Occupation forces then attacked the area and turned it into a “closed military zone”. They threatened the protestors and attempted to force them to leave their land. The villagers remained non-violent in the face of the tear gas and sound bombs, vowing they would never give up their right to their land.
According to protest organizers, "Confiscation has been ongoing in Beit Ummar. The Wall and Gush Etzion bloc are both devised to drive the Palestinian population from their lands."
Last August, the Occupation distributed confiscation orders to the village that affects the entire area from Beit Fajjar in the East to Surif in the West. Along a line of 5 km, the Israeli administration officially confiscated 200 dunums of village lands to build the Wall that will allow further expansion of Gush Etzion bloc. However, the Municipality of Beit Ummar states that some 500-600 dunums of village land will be destroyed as a result of the Wall’s construction, while another 6000 dunums of land cultivated with grapes and almond trees will be isolated behind the Apartheid Wall.