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Israel bulldozers raze Palestinian farmland, uproot olive trees

September 12, 2019 at 1:14 pm

Palestinian farmers inspect the damage done to their olive trees after they were cut down by Israeli settlers [Issam Rimawi/Anadolu Agency]

Israeli occupation forces attacked and bulldozed large areas of Palestinian agricultural land in the occupied West Bank at dawn today.

Head of Atouf Village Council Abdullah Bisharat confirmed that soldiers swept into Palestinian territorial grounds in Um Kbeish, located near the town of Tammun, south of Tubas, in the north-eastern West Bank.

Authorities called on officers to uproot and destroy 300 olive trees and hundreds of dunams of Palestinian farmlands.

Bisharat added that four water wells, used by the farmers for irrigation, were also demolished. Palestinians were given no prior warning of the demolition.

READ: Israeli settlers destroy more olive trees in occupied West Bank

The area has been a frequent target of military raids since June when two wells and a dozen olive trees were bulldozed. Palestinian human rights organisation Al Haq noted that documents proving ownership of Palestinian land has allowed landowners to plant olive trees since 2012.

Local farmers are barred from tending to their land under the pretext that the area has been classed “a nature reserve” by occupation authorities.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is already starting to follow through on his promise to annex the Jordan Valley, Bisharat said in response to the occupation’s latest action.

Earlier this week Netanyahu pledged to annex the Jordan Valley should he win a new term in office next week.

READ: How to confront Israel’s annexation of the occupied West Bank