Settlers assault farmer, sons in Bethlehem-district village

Bethlehem/PNN/

Israeli settlers today assaulted a Palestinian farmer and his sons in Kisan village, east of Bethlehem, according to local sources according to official Wafa news agency.

Deputy Mayor of Kisan, Ahmad Ghazzal, said that a group of settlers severely beat Hussein Ibayyat along with his sons as the latter inspecting a plot of land they have rented from its Palestinian owner for cultivation.

The assailants came from the nearby colonial settlement outpost of Ibei Hanahal, which was built on lands confiscated from the village.

Ghazzal added that Israeli soldiers rushed to the scene and held Ibayyat along with his sons instead of stopping the assailants.

Meanwhile, settlers planted a plot of Palestinian land, west of the village, with a large number of olive and pine trees and installed electricity poles at the site.

Located 11 kilometers to the south of Bethlehem city, Kisan has a population of some 600 and occupies a total area of 133,330 dunams.

Under the Oslo Accords, an agreement made 25 years ago that was supposed to last just five years towards a self-governing country alongside Israel, the Palestinian Authority was given limited control over a tiny pocket of land occupying 112 dunams, accounting for less than 1 percent of the village’s total area. Israel maintains control over 108,952, classified as Area C, accounting for 81.7 percent.

The remaining part of 24,266 dunams, accounting for 18 percent, is classified as a nature reserve.

Israel has established three colonial settlements, namely Ma‘ale Amos and Mizpe Shalem besides the settlement outpost of Ibei Hanahal on lands confiscated from the village. It has confiscated further land for the construction of settler-only by-pass road no. 901 and road no. 3698, which extends for 16.1 kilometers on the village land.

Israel has constructed a section of the apartheid wall, confiscating and isolating some 87,344 dunams of fertile land, accounting for 65.5 percent of the village total area, for colonial settlement activities and pushing the villagers into a crowded enclave, a ghetto, surrounded by walls, settlements, and military installations.

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