Israeli forces today cracked down on an anti-settlement-construction rally in Beit Dajan village, east of Nablus city, causing dozens to suffocate, according to witnesses.
They confirmed that a large Israeli military force violently dispersed the participants of the rally called for to defend the villagers’ lands threatened with confiscation, northeast of the village, to make room for Israeli colonial settlement construction.
Soldiers fired tear gas canisters, stun grenades and rubber-coated steel bullets towards the participants, causing dozens to suffocate and injuring a number of others with rubber-coated steel bullets.
Earlier this month, Israeli forces quelled a tree-planting event that the villagers organized to prevent Israel from seizing their land for the construction of illegal settlements.
Such events came in the wake of the construction of a new settlement outpost on the territories of the village. Settlers installed an animal barn, extended water pipelines to supply the new outpost with water, and built a several-kilometers road, causing damage and seizing hundreds of donums of the villagers’ land.
Located 12 kilometers to the east of Nablus city, Beit Dajan has a population of some 4,700 and occupies a total area of 44,100 dunams, including 360 donums of built-up area for the villagers. A large part of the village lands were seized for the construction of Al-Hamra and Mekhora (Mehola) colonial settlements, east and southeast of the village, in 1971 and 1973.
The village depends on grains plantation and fruitful trees, such as olive, figs and almonds.