“Declared As State Land”
Confiscation of 16 dunums from Al Jab’a Lands Southwest of Bethlehem City

“Declared As State Land” <br> Confiscation of 16 dunums from Al Jab’a Lands Southwest of Bethlehem City


On February 8, 2012, resident Khalid Naji Mahmoud Masha’leh, from Al-Jab’a village southwest of Bethlehem Governorate received an Israeli military order issued by the Israeli Custodian of State Property at the Israeli Civil Administration in the oPt issued on February 8, 2012 and holds number 147.


According to the Israeli military order, Mr. Masha’leh has to evacuate his 16 dunums land within 45 days and remove all what exists on it, this includes but not limited to trees, infrastructure installations, or anything else, under the pretext that the lands are classified as “State Land.” See the photocopy of the Israeli military order below:
Photocopy for the Israeli Order
In an interview conducted by ARIJ field team, Mr. Masha’leh indicated that he received a similar military order in September 2005 under the same pretext where he submitted a petition at the Israeli court, which is still pending a decision. Mr. Masha’leh added that it is his land and he has the documents that prove his ownership of the land, which he used to cultivate 20 years ago. Moreover and according to the military order, Mer. Masha’leh has to uproot about 950 trees (olive and almonds) planted in his land before the Israeli bulldozers do; otherwise he would be fined for the expenses of the uprooting and razing of his trees! A photocopy of the Israeli ownership document for Mr. Masha’leh land:
Photo 1: a Photocopy of the ownership document of the targeted land
Mr. Masha’leh also provided that on February 8,2006, few months after receiving the first military order, the Israeli Army bulldozers uprooted 980 trees from his land under the pretext that these lands are classified as “State Land”. See photos of the targeted land


Photos for the targeted land in Al-Jab’a
The map of the targeted land in Al-Jab’a
Al Jab’a Village is located 12.5 km to the southwest of Bethlehem city and 15 km to the northwest of Hebron city. It has a total area of 7,120 dunums; of which, 152 dunums constitute the built-up area. It is bounded by the 1949 Armistice Line (Green Line) from the west, the settlements of Gava’ot, Rush Tzurim and Beit ‘Ayn from the east, the settlement of Betar Ilit from the north and the city of Surif from the south.
According to OSLO II Interim agreement of 1995, the lands of Al Jab’a village were classified into areas B & C, where areas classified as ‘B’, are those lands where Palestinians have full control over the civil administration, and Israel continues to have overriding responsibility for security (240 dunums – 3.4% of the village’s total area); while areas classified as ‘C’, are those areas where Israel retains full control over security and administrative issues (6880 dunums – 96.4% of the village’s total area).
To read more about the Israeli violations and colonial activities against Al-Jab’a village refer to a previously written case study: Demolition takes place in Al Jab’a village, Hebron Governorate, October 12, 2011.
Israel continues to target Palestinian residents and their properties in all over the occupied Palestinian territory (oPt) in order to impose facts on the ground, to prevent local residents from building on their own lands in order to expand the adjacent illegal settlements, which were built on the village’s lands. This in turn constitutes a grave breach of the International law rules and human conventions such as:
  • Article 53 & 147 of the Fourth Geneva Convention of 1949 indicated that: Extensive destruction and appropriation of property not justified by military necessity and carried out unlawfully and wantonly, is a grave breach of the Convention.
  • Moreover Art. 23 of the Hague Convention of 1907 also provides: In addition to the prohibitions provided by special Conventions, it is especially forbidden to destroy or seize the enemy’s property, unless such destruction or seizure be imperatively demanded by the necessities of war.
  • Also under the Universal Declaration of Human Rights Adopted and proclaimed by General Assembly resolution 217 A (III) of, December 10, 1948, Article 17 reads: ‘No one shall be arbitrarily deprived of his property.’ Which means it bans Israel from destroying or confiscating the property of the Palestinians at any case.
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Categories: Military Orders