Israeli Occupation Authorities Confiscate a Bulldozer and Issue House Demolition Orders in Khirbet Umm Lasafa in Yatta

Israeli Occupation Authorities Confiscate a Bulldozer and Issue House Demolition Orders in Khirbet Umm Lasafa in Yatta

A) Bulldozer Confiscation:

On October 5th, 2008 Israeli occupation forces confiscated a bulldozer owned by Mr. Zeidan Issa Al Shawahein from the town of Yatta in Hebron Governorate while working in Khirbet Umm Lasafa. It was confiscated while carrying out land rehabilitation in lands belonging to Palestinians from the clan of Abu Murreir. Mr. Ismat Abu Murreir, one of the beneficiaries of the rehabilitation, indicated the following to the Land Research Center's field researcher: ' About ten Israeli vehicles belonging to the Army, Police and the DCL raided the work location in Beir Abu Shbah accompanied by engineers and bulldozer specialists. They ordered the bulldozer operator and other workers out of the location while specialists started the bulldozer and drove away with it. Another larger vehicle was summoned to the location and towed the bulldozer away to the area of Gush Etzion. ' 


He added: ' The bulldozer is humongous. While the 'specialist' was driving it, he hit the electrical network and brought down a number of electrical poles which led to cutting off of electricity on Umm Lasafa. When the residents complained about that, one of the soldiers said that he will call the electricity technicians to restore the electricity on the expense of the owner of the bulldozer. They never came. Palestinian technicians from the South Electricity Company were later called to fix the problem. '


Up until the writing of this report, the bulldozer was still held in the colony of Etzion. In an effort to get the bulldozer back, the owner hired a lawyer who told him that occupation authorities are demanding a sum of NIS 100,000 to give it back. The bulldozer's mark is Volvo 4600 and its make is 2004. It is considered to be the biggest of its kind and is valued at more than a NIS 1.0 million. Three brothers, Zeidan, Salah and Ziad Al Shawaheen, have pulled their resources together and bought it. About 25 people benefit from the income generated from the bulldozer. The daily losses caused by the impoundment of the bulldozer is about NIS 3,500 per day.


Photo 1: The rehabilitation project of Abu Murreir clan from which the bulldozer was confiscated


In terms of the rehabilitation project itself, Israeli occupation forces forced the land owners to close down the agricultural road leading to the targeted lands with large rocks until a court order is issued. Abu Murrier clan was planning to rehabilitate 4 dunums of their 400 dunum lands on their own expense with the intention of constructing Green Houses on the location. The targeted lands are close to the colony of Karmaeil and By-Pass Road 60.


Photo 2: The agricultural road occupation forces forced Abu Murrier clan to foreclose.


Stopping the rehabilitation work by the Israeli occupation forces prevented land owners (n=50 people) as well as 4 daily workers from benefiting from it. The four workers are:

  • Mr. Ismat Musa Musallam; the breadwinner of a 9-member family. He used to earn NIS 120 daily from the project.

  • Mr. Ahmad Al Jabareen; the breadwinner of a family of 5. He used to earn NIS 120 of daily basis.

  • Mr. Sami Al Shawaheen. He used to work as a guard for the project. He is the breadwinner for a family of 13 as he used to earn NIS 2,000 on monthly basis. 

  • Mr. Mohammad Al Jabareen; the breadwinner for a family of 6 as he used to earn NIS 120 on daily basis.

B) House Demolition Orders in Umm Lasafa:

Israeli occupation authorities, also, issued demolition orders against 5 houses and an agricultural room in Umm Lasafa belonging to Mr. Ismaeil Illyan Awad and his relatives. The owners of the threatened properties are:




Area in m2

No. of Family Members

Type of Building


Khaled hammad Illyan




Cement and bricks


Saeed Mohammad Illyan




Sami Hammad Illyan




Ismaeil Illyan Awad




Hammad Illyan Makhamra


Mud hut






Photo 3: The threatened house in Umm Lasaafa



Photo 4: Mr. Ismaeil Illyan Awad in front of his sheep and house in Umm Lasafa 


It is worth pointing out that Israeli occupation forces have demolished a house owned by Mr. Shafeeq Isameil Illyan in the same location in 2003. The cost for building the house at that time was about 12,000 Jordanian Dinars. These forces have also prevented his father, Mr. Isameil Illiyan, from rehabilitating his 1-dunum land in October 5th, 2008.


Umm Lasafa in Brief:

The Khirbet of Umm Lasafa is located east of the town of Yatta. Its population is about 1,000 most of which work as herders and farmers. Members of the clans of Qareish, Abu Hmeid, Zein and Abu Mureir live in the khirbet. The affairs of the khirbet is run by a local village council that has no headquarter. A co-ed school provides educational services to the population of the khirebt until the 7th grade after which students go to Khillet Al Mayya and Yatta to continue their education.  A mosque and a clinic does exist in the khirbet which lacks a water network. The residents rely on cisterns and rain harvest to meet their drinking needs. In terms of the electricity, the khirbets' residents get it from the Israeli Electrical Company and they pay accordingly.


Photo 5: An overview picture of Khirbet Umm Lasafa, east of Yatta.

The Khirbet is bounded from the east by the colony of Karmaeil, from the west by the town of Yatta, from the north by By-Pass Road 60 and Israeli military towers and from the south by By-Pass Road 60, Khirbet Twani and the colony of Ma'on.


Photo 6: The colony of Karmaeil near the Khirbet of Umm Lasafa.




Prepared by:
The Land Research Center




Categories: Military Orders