The Israeli Occupation plows hundreds of dunums in Msafir Yatta Town

The Israeli Occupation plows hundreds of dunums in Msafir Yatta Town
Violation: plowing 700 dunums of Palestinian lands.
Date: February, 2010.
Violators: the Israeli Occupation Authorities.
Victims: Msafir villagers.
Location: Msafir village – Yatta Town.

The Israeli Occupation Forces leveled hundreds of dunums planted mainly with wheat and yeast in Msafir village near Yatta. According to eyewitnesses, on mid- February, two Israeli Occupation Army bulldozers accompanied by a group of Israeli soldiers started plowing and sabotaging large areas of land.

Pictures 1+2+3: dozers left nothing but trenches, holes, and craters
The bulldozers damaged more than 700 dunums of land. They left nothing behind but trenches and craters. One of the trenches was about 150 meters long. Also, they made some earth mounds. Moreover, all the plants in the area were destroyed.
Picture 4: lands used to be planted with cereals

Picture 5: an earth mound placed on Palestinian lands
The Israeli Occupation Forces actions had no apparent reason. The locals were making speculations on the reasons. Some of them stated that this is a step towards taking over the whole area and turning it into an Israeli Army training ground saying that they have noticed a lot of Israeli soldiers and vehicles in the area.
It must be pointed that the Israelis tend to make certain types of drills in the Palestinian territories. The visitor of the deserted ‘Msafir’ can witness the huge disruption of the lands. The Israeli Occupation Forces turned the area into a ‘disruption ground’, an area designed for digging trenches and craters besides trampling on plants by the Israeli soldiers and vehicles.
The damage was maximized by the fact that the plants were on their early growth process. The plowings were concentrated in Khirbit al Fkheit, Khirbit al Markiz, and Khirbit Hanba, residential areas in Msafir. The damage done in the area deprived more than 4000 of cattle of their natural food sources. Besides, the farmers’ losses because of the plowings were dramatic.
The Israeli Occupation Military Encampment in ‘Khirbit al Markiz’:
The Israeli Occupation Army established a military camp in Khirbit al Markiz soon after the conquest of the West Bank in 1967.  The camp contains rooms and tents for soldiers, an armory, and tanks Dormitory. This camp was built on Yatta Town lands. The Israeli soldiers used to use the huge areas around the camp for training purposes and prohibit the Palestinians from reaching their lands around the camp.
Picture 6: the military camp, the sabotages can also be seen

Pictures 7+8: the debris of Palestinian lands

Msafir – Yatta Town:
The name Msafir, is used to describe the huge areas of agricultural lands located to the south of Yatta town. Many residential areas can be seen inside Msafir, most of them are nomads who immigrated there after the catastrophe ‘the Nakba’ happened in 1948. Others are people from Yatta who moved there for agricultural purposes.
Nomadic lifestyle has taken over people living there and depends solely on grazing and farming on their living. Modern life aspects cannot be seen in Msafir. Furthermore, there is only one school in the area. It is nothing more than a group of simple tents since the Israeli prohibit building a new, modern school.
It takes more than an hour to get to Msafir from Yatta, there is only one unpaved road that leads to the area. The road is usually unsafe to use since the Israeli soldiers harass anyone passing through.
Picture 9: Khirbit Janba

Picture 10: Msafir elementary school

Categories: Agriculture