Israeli settlers have recently uprooted around 1,000 trees from several farms around the West Bank cities of Nablus and Bethlehem, the Palestinian newspaper Al-Quds reported.
When Palestinian farmer, Ahmed Meqbel, went to work at his farm in al-Qaryout village to the south of Nablus on Tuesday, he found that Israeli settlers had uprooted 121 of his newly planted olive trees. Meqbel blamed the incident on settlers living in the nearby settlement of Shafot Rahel.
Taking account of the total number of his trees that have been uprooted by Israeli settlers, the farmer said that in 2007, they had uprooted 300 of his fruit bearing olive trees which had led to the loss of his livelihood.
Bashar al-Qaryouti, an activist in the Popular Committee to Confront Israel’s Apartheid Wall, said that about 40 armed settlers tried to break into the village on Tuesday. They reached the western entrance of the city; however, Israeli forces stopped them.
Meanwhile, another activist in the aforementioned committee, Ahmed Salah, said that Israeli settlers had uprooted 350 fruit bearing trees in al-Khader village to the south of city. The trees belonged to the farmer Ismail Sobeeh.
The activist told al-Quds newspaper that Sobeeh had been shocked when he saw the Israeli settlers uprooting grape, olive and fig trees from his land. According to the activist, Sobeeh and his family live on the revenues from his farm.
The chief of Al-Khader municipality, Tawfeeq Salah, said that Israeli settlers had recently seized more than 500 dunams of land in the area.