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Friday, 15 October. 2021
Your Key to Palestine
The Palestinian Initiatives for The Promotoion of Global Dialogue and Democracy

As you are all well aware, the political situation in Palestine is deteriorating rapidly and the strict siege imposed upon all of Palestine by the Israeli authority continues to cripple our lives.

Whilst the international community is focusing on the recently released "Road Map", Beit Sahour is faced with the reality of further land confiscation. A much larger area in Beit Sahour is now under threat of being forcibly taken from the legal owners who have received an order of land confiscation. The area measures about 300 dunams (1 dunam is 1000m2).

The establishment of the Har Homa colony was the initial step in the Zionist plan to increase Jewish settlement in our area. This confiscation of our land has continued unabated and we are now faced with yet another confiscation order against citizens of Beit Sahour.

Our main concern remains that the Israelis will keep expanding under the erroneous excuse of "security reasons"; we are being forced from our homeland whilst the international community insists that negotiations for an agreement between us and Israel be reached. Our concerns have become reality, and more and more land is under the threat of confiscation.

Israel proclaims a desire to negotiate with us to reach a settlement, however the real facts on the ground, facts that are ignored or hidden, show the real desire of the Israeli government; they want our land and they do not want us to live on it. The district of Bethlehem is slowly being eaten away. Slice after slice of land is taken to construct by-pass roads, to expand existing colonies and to erect part of the wall to segregate us. This is happening throughout the West Bank.

The current legal case concerning the Jabal Al Diek home demolition order is still pending in the Israeli Supreme Court and the demolitions have been frozen until another court issues a new order. We believe that we were successful in this case because of the support we received from the international community and the external pressure that was exerted. This new order of confiscation was delivered by soldiers of the Israeli occupation army on the 3 May, 2003. The order was attached to a map which indicates a new military zone in the area. Part of the land under threat is located in area A, lands which fall under full Palestinian control, according to Oslo II agreement, signed in 1995. About 20 houses along side the Greek Orthodox Housing community will be completely isolated from the town. Please log on to http://www.arij.org for more detailed information, along with maps indicating exactly the area in question.

You have all played a vital role in supporting us, so please do not fail us now. We urgently need the international community to assist us fight this discrimination and abuse of our rights. Israel is allowed to expand and we are not allowed to do so. Where are our children going to grow up, how can they think of building a future?

On behalf of the citizens of Bethlehem District, I urge you to come and visit the site for your own eyes and to protest against the injustice we face. They are killing any hope of peace and grabbing as much as they can before any agreements are made.

Stand with us now to help us prevent the theft of our land.

Yours sincerely,

Fuad Kokaly Mayor of Beit Sahour

Contact us
Rimawi Bldg, 3rd floor
14 Emil Touma Street,
Al Massayef, Ramallah
Postcode W607

Mailing address:
P.O.Box 69647
972-2-298 9490/1
972-2-298 9492

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