The Isolation Wall, an Advanced Method to Confiscate Palestinian Lands

The Isolation Wall, an Advanced Method to  Confiscate Palestinian Lands


In a very dangerous escalation, Israeli occupation forces declared the area behind the Isolation Wall in Hebron Governorate as a “military area” in a step that aims at the confiscation of more Palestinian lands and transferring its owners and residents.

New Military Order:

While the entire world was focusing its attention on the bloody war carried out by the Israeli occupation forcers against the Palestinians of Gaza, the commander of the Israeli occupation forces in the West Bank issued a new military order number S/03/09 in accordance with the 1970 military order number 378. The new order called for the declaration of a “seam zone” in the Governorate of Hebron.

The new zone includes all lands located behind the Wall in the villages of Surif, Jaba’, Khirbet al Deir, Kharas, Nuba, Beit ‘Ula, Tarqumiya and Idhna all of which are located west of the Governorate. The lands also include those located in the towns of Deir Samit, Beit Awwa, the so-called “Front Line” villages west of the town of Dura in addition to Arab Al Ramadien and the area of Lassefer in the most southern parts of the Governorate.

According to the new order, Palestinian farmers, residents and owners of lands located beyond the Wall must apply to the occupation forces to get a special permit to access their land. Also, accessing the land will only be permitted through specific crossing points including the following:

1.     Jaba’ point located west of the town of Surif

2.     Khirbet Al Deir

3.     Tarqumiya checkpoint

4.     Idhna gate

5.     Deir Samit gate

6.     Beit Awwa gate

7.     Deir Al Asal gate

8.     Shani point.

9.     Sinsana gate, located west of the village of Arab Al Ramadien

10.   Meitar gate, located west of the town of Adh Dhahiriya.



The director of the Palestinian District Liaison Office, Mr. Jamal Nofal, informed the Land Research Center (LRC)’s field researcher that Hebron Governor as well as the affected municipalities and the Palestinian Ministry of Civil Affairs have been notified about the new order. He also indicated that Israeli occupation authorities have supplied his office with a sample of permit request to be used by the land owners to be issued the permit. However, he continued by saying: ' Israeli occupation authorities have placed a condition of proving land ownership before issuing the permit. This would make it exceptionally hard to get a permit as it would mean that the farmer or land owner would need to go through a lengthy and bureaucratic process to prove his ownership of the land. In the past, people would simply become land owners through a “Sale Document” coupled with two witnesses. Occupation authorities do not accept that as a proof of ownership. '

It is an undeniable fact that Israel, through the issuing of this military order, is aiming at preventing the Palestinian farmer and land owner from reaching and accessing his land located beyond the Isolation Wall. Now that the Wall has devoured thousands of dunums of the West Bank, Israel is taking actual and concrete steps to annex the isolated lands.

Moreover, the military order has allowed the so-termed “Israeli” to access the newly-declared “seam zone.” The order defined the “Israeli” as fitting any one of the following categories:

  • A citizen of the State of Israel.

  • A resident of the State of Israel who is registered in the Israeli Population Registry in accordance with the Population Registry Law of the year 1965.

  • Any one who has the right to immigrate to Israel in accordance with the “Law of Return” of the year 1950.         

It was noticed that the Order went into great detail in defining who the “Israeli” is as to allow entry only the Jewish Israeli citizen of the State of Israel or the Jew who wants to immigrate to Israel while exempting Palestinian Jerusalemites from the same access right. This leads directly to the belief that the targeted lands will become under the direct control of Jewish colonists.


The Colony of Tenah


The Colony of Eshkelot


Despite the fact that the military order concerns the lands behind the Wall in the Governorate of Hebron (estimated to be around 30,000 dunums), it is considered to be as a dangerous prelude to its implementation in governorates with more isolated lands and more Palestinian centers located behind the Wall such as Bethlehem and Ramallah governorates.      

To shed more light on the hazards of this military order, LRC would like to point out the following issues:

1.     The declaration of the area located behind the Isolation Wall as a “seam zone” is a new phenomena. Such lands were declared in previous similar orders as Palestinian lands that will stay under the ownership of its owners and that the Wall is only a temporary security measure. The “seam zone” declaration is a measure to annex and grab more Palestinian lands under the guise of security which contradicts and violates the Geneva Fourth Convention.

2.     Any land owner or farmer wanting to access his land must first prove his ownership of the land before applying for a permit. Israeli authorities know very well that the present ownership papers are weak at best as lands are usually registered in the name of grand grandfathers. This fact makes it easy to decline issuing permits on the ground that land ownership is not “clear” and it cannot be proven. Moreover, the so-called Israeli “Civil Administration” does not have either the mandate or the capacity to decide on land ownership status.

3.     Palestinians living behind the Isolation Wall must leave the area in case he/she was not issued a permit to live in the “seam zone” !!. The “legality” of his presence in his home will be depended on the permit. It is expected that he and his family will increasingly face problems which might force him to eventually leave.

4.     The military order allows the “Israeli” or any Jew wanting to immigrate to Israel to enter the “seam zone” without a permit. This effectively means allowing colonists and Israeli colonial companies from using the confiscated lands to build more colonies on it.

As such, the Israeli occupation proves yet again its nature of evicting the Palestinian population and replacing it with the Israeli one. It also proves that the Israeli Racist Isolation Wall is yet another method used by the Israeli occupation to confiscate and grab more Palestinian lands under the guise of “security.”   


Prepared by: 
The Land Research Center


Categories: Military Orders