BETHLEHEM (The Inside Palestine) – Israeli settlers today encroached upon and plowed a large tract of Palestinian farmland, east of Bethlehem district, according to a local official.
Coordinator of the Anti-Wall and Settlement Comission, Hassan Breijah, told WAFA that scores of settlers, under the military protection, ploughed dozens of donums of Palestinian farmland belonging to the Zawahreh and al-Wahsh clans in al-Badiya Ash-Sharqiya (Eastern Wilderness), as a prelude to seize them.
There are over 700,000 Israeli settlers living in colonial settlements which have expanded rapidly over the last two decades across the West Bank and East Jerusalem, and have severely constrained the possibility of a contiguous Palestinian state.
The Israeli government provides settlers with roads, electricity, water, and sewage systems that remain inaccessible to many neighboring Palestinians.
While the international community has been vocal in its condemnation of Israeli settlement activity, it has taken few steps to pressure Israel into ceasing its colonial settlement enterprise.
Israel’s nation-state law that passed last July stated that building and strengthening the settlements is a “national interest.”