Israeli Occupation Forces Demolish “Freedom Road” in Qarawet Bani Hassan for the Second Time

Israeli Occupation Forces Demolish “Freedom Road” in Qarawet Bani Hassan for the Second Time
Violation: The demolition of the Freedom Road in the town of Qarawet Bani Hassan.
Date: March 24th, 2011.

For the second time in less than 4 months Israeli occupation forces destroyed Freedom Road in the town of Qarawet Bani Hassan west of Salfeet Governorate. The forces used 2 large bulldozers accompanied with a number of military jeeps in the destruction process.
Pic. 1-3
The destruction this time was much more extensive as occupation forces removed all of the asphalt over a distance of 1800 meters in addition to the total destruction of the basic infrastructure of the road to the degree that it cannot be rehabilitated. The targeted road was asphalted in mid 2010 to connect between the town of Qarawet Bani Hassan and the Nuweitif Spring located northeast of the town. It was seen as a challenge to the attempts by Netafiem and Havot Ya’eir colonists to take over the area surrounding the road.
The cooperation between the Israeli occupation forces and the colonists came to the forefront during the first destruction which took place in December 2010 as colonists placed a fence around the spring and attempted to confiscate it for the benefit of the said colonies. The construction of the road was financed by the Palestinian Finance Ministry at an estimated cost of $350,000. The first destruction caused $100,000 in damages while the second one led to extensive damages at an estimated cost of $150,000.
“They Destroy …. We Build”
With these short words Mr. Abdel Kareem Mar’ei, the mayor of Qarawet Bani Hassan, began his conversation with the Land Research Center (LRC)’s field researcher. He pointed out that the Municipality was aiming at developing the area from the environmental and agricultural aspects, yet occupation forces wanted for the area to be a monopoly for the usage of the colonists. Mr. Mar’ei added that Israeli forces have destroyed the road under the pretext of being built “without a permit in Area C”” while providing cover for colonists to control more lands. Yet, he reiterated that “we are the rightful owners of the land and we will re-build the road in spite of the occupation and its forces.”
Qarawet Bani Hassan:
The town is located atop a high hill about 13 kilometers west of the city of Salfeet. The town dates back at least 2000 years as evident by the presence of a number of archeological sites in it. It is, also, said that the name of the town is rooted in the Arabic word (quira) which means hospitality. A number of Palestinian villages and towns surround the town including the following: Bidya from the west, Sarta from the south and Deir Istya and Haris from the east. The population of the town is 3,840 (according to PCBS’s population census of 2007) while an additional 1,000 live outside of the town.
There are three clans in the town including Asi, Rayyan and Mar’ei. A large segment of the residents of the village depend on agriculture as the main source of income. The main crops are olives and wheat. Others depend on labor and trade as alternative sources of income. There are three water springs in the town; Bar Abu Ammar, Al Ma’ajoor and Al Mahd.


Categories: Demolition