6th Annual Festival of Non-Violence Resistance of the South Hebron Hills

The Popular Struggle Committee and the communities of Masafer Yatta invite you to the 6th Annual Festival of Non-Violence Resistance to celebrate the perseverance and courageous spirit of the inhabitants of the Firing Zone 918.

The festival will include:
– Speeches by the leaders of the local communities;
– Dabke dancing (a traditional Palestinian dance) performed by a troupe from At-Tuwani;
– Concert of traditional Palestinian music;
– Clowns’ entertainment;
– Skits performed by the children who attended previous summer camps;
– Lunch…

The festival aim to raise awareness and stressed the rights of the communities of the Masafer Yatta district, and specifically of the Firing Zone 918, to remain on their land.

The Firing Zone 918 (7.500 acre) was proclaimed during the ’70, but any enforcement action had been taken since the end of ’90. Twelve communities live in caves and tents, without electricity and running water, in a constant situation of uncertainty. Authorizations to build are systematically denied and most of the structures of the villages have pendent demolition orders, despite the existence of official documents proving the inhabitants property of the land.

We invite you to participate in the event, as well as to spread the word.
Transportation from Ramallah and from Hebron is available. Space is limited and advance registration is essential.
Please email: al.mufaqarah@gmail.com or call 059 53 90 847 by noon on Friday 28th June.

5th Annual Festival of Non-Violence Resistance of the South Hebron Hills

5th Annual Festival of Non-Violence Resistance of the South Hebron Hills

AL-MUFAQARAH R-EXIST: A PRESS CONFERENCE OVER THE MOSQUE’S RUINS

On Saturday 15 December a big press conference toke place in Mufaqarah, a village located in the South Hebron Hills, by initiative of the Popular Struggle Coordination Committee in cooperation with the Popular South Hebron Hills Popular Committee. The aim of this initiative was to launch the reconstruction of the mosque of the village, demolished for the second time few days ago from Israeli occupying forces, and to focus media attention on the area, declared Firing Zone 918 by Israeli government in ’70.

ISRAELI SOLDIERS STOPPED THE BUILDING OF THE WATER TANK. ONE PLAESTINIAN ARRESTED

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Monday 29th of October the Israeli Army and Police broke in Ar Rakeez, a village between Al Mufaqarah and Al Twani. The purspose: to stop the works on a new water cistern. The owner, Said Mohammad Ibrahim Raba’, was beaten up and arrested. According to Palestinian witnesses the soldiers ordered the workers to stop, but Said Raba’ refused.

Nevertheless, any stop working order was never delivered by the DCO (District Coordination Office, the section of the Israeli military that works for the civil administration in the Occupied Palestinian Territories). When the internationals arrived, at 6 pm, three soldiers and a policeman were beating the Palestinian man.

While the soldiers and the policemen were holding the man, kneeled and handcuffed, around sixty Palestinians from nearby villages rushed on the scene. At 6.45 pm the Palestinian was brought to Kiryat Arba Police Station charged of aggression to soldiers.

His daughter, 21 years old, was hospitalized because of a hit received during the military aggression. She didn’t suffer any internal damage, but she continues to have abdominal pain.

Once the Israeli army left,  about fifty Palestinians started working on the water cistern, that now is completed. But Said Mohammad Ibrahim Raba’ is still in prison, waiting for the trial.

They got it…one new roof in South Hebron Hills

They got it. After several months of judiciary trail and claims at the Supreme Court of Israel, people of the small Al-Mufaqarah community managed to finish the construction of the Mosque started four months ago. Thanks to the hard night-work, the support of the people of Jinba and Tuba neighborhood and of the Popular Struggle Coordination Commitee, the roof of the Mosque now rises on the bare landscape of the South Hebron Hills area.

Solidarity March in the South Hebron Hills

On Saturday 22nd of September the people of South Hebron Hills marched along with Israeli and international activists to claim their rights to live in the so called Firing zone 918. This area of the South Hebron Hills was proclaimed a closed military area in the 70s and its inhabitants are currently under threat of evacuation.

The solidarity march started in the village of Tuwani around 10 and head towards Mufaqarah, where the demonstrators gathered before reaching the village of Tuba for lunch. According to the state position on the Firing Zone 98 dispute, this village will be spared from eviction along with al-Mufaqarah, Maghayir al-Abeed and as-Sarura, but several structures, including the wind turbine donated by Comet in 2010, are under threat of demolition.

The participants, who included women and children from different communities, carried Palestinian and peace flags along with Vittorio Arrigoni’s pictures. They also proclaimed the area a “Peace Palestinian area” by fixing posters on the concrete slab put by the occupation authorities to signal the entrance to the claimed military training area.

On their way back to Mufaqarah and Tuwani, several demonstrators were attacked by settlers coming from the illegal outpost of Havat Ma’on, situated between Tuwani and Tuba.  Armed with stones and slingshot, the settlers ran towards the Palestinians and started to throw stones from the top of a hill. When the army arrived, two covered face settlers approached the soldiers still brandishing sticks in their hands and asked them to push away the Palestinians and the Israeli activists who kept on documenting. When the Israeli police arrived one of the settlers was arrested while the Israeli activists were chased away by the army.

The solidarity event ended in Tuba with a dabke exhibition and the screening of “Tomorrow’s land”, a movie on Tuwani’s struggle by the Italian filmmakers Andrea Paco Mariani and Nicola Zambelli.

Call for Action on Saturday 22d September !

The South Hebron Hills Popular Committee calls for you to participate in a march through the so called “Firing Zone 918”. These 30.000 acres of private and agricultural land claimed as a training military area by the Israeli occupation forces risk to be evacuated since next 1st of November.

The march will start at 10am in the village of Tuwani and will continue through the villages of Mufaqarah, Maghayir al Abeed and Isfey. The march will end around 4 pm in the village of Tuba, where Palestinian representatives, Israeli peace activists and international volunteers will hold speeches. There will also be a show of Palestinian traditional music and dabke dance.

The purpose of the march is to support the steadfastness of the inhabitants of the area, facing soldiers’ harassment, movements’ restrictions, house demolitions and a pending threat of a second evacuation. These communities are also frequently exposed to settlers’ attacks as the so proclaimed closed area is surrounded by the four illegal settlements of Ma’on, Karmil, Susya and Metzadot Yehuda, established at the beginning of the 80’s. Settlers’ violence targets people, in particular the local shepherds and their flocks, as well as Palestinian crops and wheels.
For the last months, physical assaults and properties’ vandalism increased in the whole area.

The Israeli policies in this area clearly testify to Israeli’s attempts to isolate and to ethnically clean it in order to expand its illegal settlements and annex more territory.

PLEASE COME AND STAND BESIDE THE PALESTINIAN COMMUNITIES OF SOUTH HEBRON HILLS. SUPPORT THEIR RIGHT TO RESIST TO THE ISRAELI POLICIES OF EVICTION AND DISPLACEMENT.

Background:
This area of the South Hebron Hills was proclaimed a closed military area in the 70s. In 1999, the 700 inhabitants of the area were forcibly deported and their villages were destroyed. Following a petition, the Israeli High Court of Justice ordered to allow the people to return to their land and forbade their expulsion pending a final decision. Since that moment, the Palestinian families of these hamlets have been living under threat and in a constant state of incertitude. Recently, Israel Defense Ministry Ehud Barak announced the evacuation of eight of these twelve villages -al Majaz, a-Tabban, a-Sfay, al-Fakhit, al-Halaweh, al-Mirkez, Jinba, and al-Kharuba-, while the other four – al-Mufaqarah, at-Tuba, Maghayir al-Abeed and as-Sarura – will be spared. The eviction’s cause is that the land is needed for military training.
In the case the eight hamlets are displaced,around 1500 persons will be left homeless and will be forced to move to the close city of Yatta. Also the fateof the four spared hamlets, systematically targeted with demolition orders and exposed to settlers’ attacks, will be already determined, as they will find themselves isolated and cut off from the vital center of Yatta.
According to Barak’s declaration, the villagers will be allowed to access their land for farming on weekends and Jewish holidays, and during two one-month periods each year, when the Israeli army is not training.

For more information: almufaqarah@gmail.com

No justice for Rachel Corrie

TUESDAY, AUGUST 28TH AT 11.00 AM 

In the day of Rachel Corrie’s verdict, the South Hebron Hills Popular Committee organized a demonstration in solidarity with the ISM activist killed by a bulldozer and against the evacuation of the Palestinian villages in the 918 Firing Zone.

 

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