Unlike the vast majority of Palestinians living in East Jerusalem, residents of Khirbet Khamis, a small community north of Bethlehem, hold West Bank, instead of Jerusalem, ID cards. As a result, under Israeli law they are considered “illegal residents” in their own homes. Additionally, the Barrier physically cut off the community from the Bethlehem urban area, which has served as the residents’ main service, livelihood and social center.
As the annual olive harvest begins in the West Bank, the case study describes the impact of a settlement outpost on a Palestinian village, in terms of physical assault, restricted access and damage to trees and property.
The Bir Nabala / Tel al ‘Adassa Bedouin community consists of nine families who have lived in the area between Ramallah and Jerusalem since the late 1950s. It is one of at least 16 Palestinian communities located on the “Jerusalem side” of the Barrier, although the majority of their residents hold West Bank ID cards. In August 2013, Israeli forces demolished all the structures in the community, and, a few days later, the remaining families left to the “West Bank” side of the Barrier, after being instructed to do so by the Israeli authorities. This once intact community of nine families is now dispersed into three separate locations on the “West Bank” side of the Barrier.
Abdallah is a 53-year-old fisherman from a refugee camp in the northern Gaza Strip. He owns a boat, which he runs together with four of his seven sons and another 12 fishermen. Overall, the income generated by Abdallah’s boat provides for about 70 people, the majority of them children. In the past decade his ability to gain a living from fishing has been severely undermined as a result of the restrictions imposed by the Israeli authorities on the access of fishermen to sea areas along Gaza’s coast.
At least 1,300 people currently live in the Masafer Yatta area of south Hebron Hills. Palestinian communities have been living in this area for decades, many since before the Israeli occupation began in 1967.