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The BEDOUIN

We have posted more than 30 articles on The Bedouin of the Naqab/Negev over the last three years

See the JfJfP briefing note on Bedouin Palestinians of the Naqab and download our 2013 leaflet on the Prawer plan
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Did you know?



Settlements Generate Virtually No Economic Activity
"A recent Israeli government report estimated there are…$250 million in annual exports — [only] 0.55 percent of the national total — from the West Bank, East Jerusalem and the Golan Heights, territories the international community generally considers illegally occupied."
Jodi Rodoren cited by Richard Silverstein, 22 Jan 2014

Daily acts of violence committed by Jewish Israeli citizens against West Bank Palestinians
"These incidents — now particularly heightened during the olive harvest season — are not the aberration from the norm, but a regular feature of life in the occupied West Bank. In 2012, over 7,500 Palestinian olive trees were destroyed. In the 5-year period between 2007 and 2011, there was a 315 percent increase in settler violence."
Mairav Zonszein, Israel Must Stop Settler Violence, 8 November 2013
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Police impunity
After their own investigations establishing a prima facie violation, Btselem has lodged over 280 complaints of alleged police violence in the oPt since the start of the second Intifada: "we are aware of only 12 indictments" Btselem April 2013
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Runners in the first ever Bethlehem Marathon were forced to run two laps of the same course on Sunday 21 April 2013, as Palestinians were unable to find a single stretch of free land that is 26 miles long in Area A, where the PA has both security and civil authority. See Marathon report
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30th March, land day.
On 30 March 1976, thousands of Palestinians living as a minority in Israel mounted a general strike and organised protests against Israeli government plans to expropriate almost 15,000 acres of Palestinian land in the Galilee.The Israeli government, led by prime minister Yitzhak Rabin and defence minister Shimon Peres, sent in the army to break up the general strike. The Israeli army killed six unarmed Palestinians, wounded hundreds and arrested hundreds more, including political activists. All were citizens of Israel.
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* Out of 103 investigations opened in 2012 into alleged offences committed by Israeli soldiers in the occupied territories, not a single indictment served to date
Yesh Din, 3 Feb 2013
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* In total, out of an area of 1.6 million dunams in the Jordan Valley, Israel has seized 1.25 million − some 77.5 percent − where Palestinians are forbidden to enter.
Haaretz editorial, 4 Feb 2013
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Posts

Khader Adnan: UN rapporteur condemns this ‘state barbarism’


Saving Khader Adnan’s life is saving our own soul

The Palestinian prisoner’s case is a microcosm of the unbearable cruelty of prolonged occupation.

Richard Falk, United Nations Special Rapporteur on Palestinian human rights.
16.02.12

The world watches as tragedy unfolds beneath its gaze. Khader Adnan is entering his 61st day as a hunger striker in an Israeli prison, being held under an administrative detention order without trial, charges, or any indication of the evidence against him.

From the outset of his brutal arrest in the middle of the night – in the presence of his wife and young daughters – he has been subject to the sort of inhumane and degrading treatment that is totally unlawful and morally inexcusable. Its only justification is to intimidate, if not terrify, Palestinians who have lived for 45 years under the yoke of an oppressive occupation. This occupation continuously whittles away at Palestinians’ rights under international humanitarian law – especially their right to self-determination, which is encroached upon every time a new housing unit is added to the colonising settlements that dot the hilltops surrounding Jerusalem and the West Bank.

The case of Khader Adnan is a revealing microcosm of the unbearable cruelty of prolonged occupation. It draws a contrast in the West between the dignity of an Israeli prisoner and the steadfast refusal to heed the abuse of thousands of Palestinians languishing in Israeli jails through court sentence or administrative order.

Mr Adnan’s father poignantly highlighted this contrast a few days ago by referring to Gilad Shalit, the Israeli soldier held by Hamas in captivity for several years and recently released in good health: “Where are the mother and father of Gilad Shalit? Do they not feel for me in this humanitarian case? Where are they?” He went further in drawing this comparison: “My son was arrested from his house, from among his wife and children, was taken prisoner. He was not carrying any weapon. Whereas Shalit was fighting against the people of Gaza, and destroying their homes, and firing upon, and Shalit was released.”

It is true that foreign authority figures, from the UN Secretary General on down, showed their empathy for the agony experienced by Israelis concerned for the wellbeing of Shalit, but these same personalities are notably silent in the much more compelling ordeal being experienced before our eyes in the form of Mr Adnan’s captivity, seemingly unto death. It should not be surprising that surviving family members of IRA hunger strikers should step forward expressing solidarity with Mr Adnan and compare the Irish experience of resistance to that of the Palesinians.

And who is Khader Adnan? We do not know very much about him except that he is a member of the Islamic Jihad Party. There are no accusations against him that implicate him in violence against civilians. His fellow prisoner from an earlier period of confinement in Ashkelon Prison, Abu Maria, recalls his normalcy and humanity while sharing a cell, emphasising his interest in informing other Palestinians: “Prison was like a university in those times and he was one of the professors.” Commenting on his hunger strike that has brought him extreme pain, Abu Maria says he is convinced that Khader Asnan wants to live, but will not live in humiliation: “He is showing his commitment and resistance in the only way he can right now, with his body.”

Adameer, the respected Palestinian NGO concerned with prisoners, “holds Israel accountable for the life of Khader Adnan, whose health has entered an alarmingly critical stage that will now have irreversible consequences and could lead to his fatal collapse at any moment”. Physicians who have observed his current condition conclude that, at most, he could live a few more days, saying that such a hunger strike cannot be sustained beyond 70 days in any event. Any attempt at forced feeding to keep a prisoner from dying is widely viewed as an additional abuse, a form of torture.

Finally, the reliance by Israel on administrative detention in cases of this sort is totally unacceptable from the perspective of the Geneva Convention, especially so when no disclosure of the exceptional circumstances that might warrant for reasons of imminent security the use of such an extra-legal form of imprisonment. There are currently at least 300 Palestinians being held in a manner similar to that of Mr Adnan, and so it is no wonder that sympathy hunger strikes among Palestinians are underway as expressions of solidarity.

Have we not reached a stage in our appreciation of human rights that we should outlaw such state barbarism? Let us hope that the awful experience of Khader Adnan does not end with his death, and let us hope further that it sparks a worldwide protest against both administrative detention and prisoner abuse. The Palestinian people have suffered more than enough already.

Richard Falk is Albert G. Milbank Professor Emeritus of International Law at Princeton University and Visiting Distinguished Professor in Global and International Studies at the University of California, Santa Barbara. He has authored and edited numerous publications spanning a period of five decades, most recently editing the volume International Law and the Third World: Reshaping Justice (Routledge, 2008).

He is currently serving his third year of a six-year term as a United Nations Special Rapporteur on Palestinian human rights.

Follow him on Twitter: @rfalk13

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