Sunday, April 4 2021 This week – March 18-April 3, 2021 – in the Occupied Territories

Increased presence of activists allowed for relatively quiet grazing this week in the Palestinian Jordan Valley and the South Hebron Hills, also preventing incursions of settlers’ flocks into Palestinian tended fields in the West Bank Hill Range; a settler from ‘Havat Yaacov Talya’ chased away Palestinian surveyors and when they returned with accompanying activists, he fired live ammunition; a new settler-colonist outpost was erected near ‘Meitarim’ industrial zone in the South Hebron Hills, settlers are already chasing away Palestinian shepherds in its vicinity; a gang from ‘Esh Kodesh’ outpost attacked and wounded a Palestinian from Jaloud village – Israeli soldiers present at the brutal attack chased away the Palestinian and prevented his neighbors from succoring him.

photo: Accompanying shepherds at Auja, the Palestinian Jordan Valley, April 1, 2021

South Hebron Hills
Constant presence of activists in the South Hebron Hills enables enlarged activity there. On Monday and Wednesday this week, activists accompanied grazing near Bani Naim, where on Monday settler-colonists summoned the police, but policemen who arrived confirmed that the grazing area was permitted for Palestinians. On Wednesday the settler-colonists summoned the army, and it limited grazing to a certain distance from the settler-colony.
At Zanouta activists accompanied grazing on Monday, Wednesday and Saturday, all unhampered.
For fear of settler-colonist aggressions, activists spent a night at Simra, and another night in a distant community of Susya. Activists also dedicated work days to remove rubble at Khalat A Daba, improve the track at Umm Al Kheir and restore a public park at Tawane.
On Friday, a protest was held against settler-colonist works on a new outpost opposite the colony of ‘Maon’. At Umm al Arais this week again activists joined the Palestinian family who was attacked there by settlers 3 weeks ago.
On Wednesday, settler-colonists from the ‘Nof Nesher’ outpost (Yaacov Talya’s ranch) prevented Palestinian surveyors and landowners from mapping lands in the area between Khirbet A Nabi and Bir Al Eid. On Saturday the surveyors returned with accompanying activists. This time too a settler from the outpost tried to chase them away. He fired 3-4 live shots and pointed his gun at them. Nevertheless, the surveying work was properly done and completed.
On Saturday afternoon shepherds from Zanouta reported that they had been chased away from their grazing ground by settlers. When activists arrived on the scene they discovered that a new outpost ahd been founded near the ‘Meitarim’ industrial zone, with settlers already chasing away Palestinian shepherds from grazing grounds nearby.

Palestinian Jordan Valley and West Bank Hill Range
Last week activist presence was intensified in the northern Palestinian Jordan Valley as well, mostly around the pool that the settler-colonists built lately at En Al Hilwa. On Sunday, a settler-colonist arriving there prevented a Palestinian cattle herd from drinking its water and even demanded of soldiers securing the place to prevent local Palestinian herds from approaching. However, after he left, the soldiers did not do so.
All week the place was filled with Israeli visitors (Passover week…) and Palestinian shepherds preferred to water their flocks there only during the early morning hours.
Activists accompanied grazing this week in Makhoul as well, on Sunday and Tuesday, in Farisiya on Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday, and in Humra on Wednesday. All these occasions went unhampered.
At Auja in the southern Palestinian Jordan Valley, activists accompanied shepherds on Sunday, Wednesday and Thursday, all grazing going unhampered.
Around Tayibe Junction and Deir Jarayer in the West Bank Hill Range, on Thursday and Friday activists continued their efforts to chase away flocks that the area’s outpost settler-colonists bring intentionally into tended fields belonging to local Palestinian farmers.

East Jerusalem and throughout the Occupied Territories
On Frisay, demonstrators and Members of Knesset of the Joint List party joined the weekly protest vigil at the Sheikh Jarrah Jerusalem neighborhood, calling to stop eviction of Palestinian families from their homes and the ethnic cleansing of the area by settler-colonists. The date set by the court for this eviction is growing close.
On Friday it was reported that settler-colonists vandalized dozens of olive trees in Ras Karkar (Ramallah district), and the next day – Saturday around noon – a gang from the ‘Esh Kodesh’ outpost was taped breaking into farmland of Jaloud village (Nablus district) and attacking Palestinians doing electrical work. An elderly Palestinian was attacked with stones and clubs and is suffering various wounds. Soldiers who arrived following the settler-colonists were witness to these attacks but did nothing to prevent them or arrest the assailants. Instead, they tried to distance the Palestinians and fired stun grenades at villagers who tried to arrive in order to help the attacked workers.