Itamar colonists release their cows in Aqraba olive groves despite being classified as area B

Itamar colonists release their cows in Aqraba olive groves despite being classified as area B


Violation: colonists grazing their cows in Palestinian groves
Location: Wadi al-Yanon – Aqraba  / Nablus
Date: 19/10/2014
Perpetrators: Itamar colonists
Victims: residents of Aqraba


It should be marked that Itamar colonists have been escalating their attacks and violations on Palestinians specially during the olive harvesting season. At evening of Sunday October 19th 2014, Itamar colonists released a big number of cows in the area of Wad al-Yanon, northwest of Aqraba town, more specifically in the so-known Aqraba-Nablus street no.5077. A big number of trees and branches were damaged,not mentioning the olive crops which has been badly affected as a result. Noteworthy, the targeted location is classified as area B according to Oslo Accords(under Palestinian sovereignty). The attack was carried out at time the representative of the American foreign affairs office and the governor of Nablus Ghassan Douglas were rendering a field observation to the town and the nearby villages.

The targeted lands are located south to the bypass road and are owned by a number of farmers from Aqraba and al-Yanon.


 Cows grazing in the olive groves, Photo credited to Yousef Direih


The road Aqraba-Nablus was reported closed after the outbreak of second Intifada. Noteworthy, the major parts of the lands in that area is classified as area B according to Oslo Accords(under Palestinian sovereignty) but given the fact that Itamar colony is located in the nearby, Palestinian were denied access to these lands.

 Colonists accompanied and protected by the occupation troops are used to go down the hill( on which the colony is located) through the road (1km away from the colony) to harass and assault the farmers passing by the area. It should be marked that the aforementioned road was closed since 2000 until 2010 within the siege policy that was imposed after the outbreak of the second Intifada. Lately, the occupation re-opened the road but colonists still harass and assault farmers frequently.



Photo1-3: Aqraba-Nablus road: the photo shows the LRC researcher marching the road through with the Palestine-Israel District Coordination Office DCO officer

Photo4: Itamar edges that overlooks Wad al-Yanon


Aqraba mayor Ayman Bani Fadel to the LRC researcher stated the following: " attacks and violations have been repeatedly carried out by colonist against the olives in the area. On January 2014, colonists damaged more than 40 olive trees, not mentioning chasing farmers in the groves and stealing their crops. Not only that, colonists violations were also represented in opening new colonial roads and ravaging vast area of lands despite being located with area classified B according to Oslo Accords.

Bani Fadel also added: " in regard to releasing cows in the area, this is not a recent issue since colonists have been doing so since 7 years and we still cannot find a solution for this dilemma".

No solutions in the horizon:

An activist from Aqraba Yousef Dirieh to the LRC researcher pointed out the following:

"farmers alongside with Aqraba municipality submitted many complaints throughout the past ten years via human rights organizations and official bodies such like Nablus governorate and DCO to object the barbaric activities of colonists on the town's lands whether it is classified B or C according to Oslo Accords. The only result is "nothing" but more violations, attacks and assaults on farmers and their lands".

From his side, the responsible of the occupation file in northern West Bank Ghassan Douglas told the LRC researcher the following: "the legal department in Nablus governorate submitted many pleas against colonists activities in the Palestinian suburb but the occupation only responded to that with more stalling and ignoring to!".



Prepared by
The Land Research Center




Categories: Settlers Attacks