Construction for the Jewish village of Hiran begins on the raised pad (left of picture), overlooking the Bedouin village of Umm al-Hiran
Over the past few months, we’ve been involved in various international and local actions to defend the Palestinian Bedouin villagers of Atir and Umm al-Hiran.
In response to the refusal of the Israeli courts to intervene favorably in impact litigation cases brought on behalf of Bedouin citizens, Adalah is putting greater emphasis on awareness raising and campaigning to increase pressure on Israel by other states and international bodies to protect the rights of the villagers.
1. Awareness-raising in Berlin and Brussels
In September 2016, Adalah emphasized the grave threat of demolition and eviction facing the residents of Atir-Umm al-Hiran to German government officials and parliamentarians in Berlin, and EU officials and parliamentarians in Brussels. Adalah asked these leaders to urge the Israeli government not to forcibly displace the residents – citizens of Israel - in order to establish the Jewish-only community of “Hiran”, but to seek alternatives with the full participation of the residents to allow them to remain on their land and in their homes.
A hearing in the European Parliament will be held in November 2016 on the protection of the rights of the Palestinian Bedouin. Adalah and its human rights and development agency partners will present on Israel’s policies of dispossession/forced displacement both in Israel and in the occupied West Bank, such as in Susiya. This hearing will be followed by a speaking tour in France to raise awareness about Atir-Umm al-Hiran and the dire conditions of tens of thousands of Bedouin living in the 35 unrecognized villages in the Naqab.
2. “Amandla Ngawethu” – Adalah in South Africa
This delegation to South Africa was part of an ongoing dialogue between South African Jews for a Free Palestine (SAJPF, previously known as Stop JNF South Africa) with Adalah, Zochrot, and the Association for the Defense of the Rights of the Internally Displaced (ADRID).
As part of the 10-day tour in September 2016, Adalah Attorney Myssana Morany, who works in the Land and Planning Unit, raised awareness of the increasing displacement of Palestinian citizens of Israel from their traditional lands and other violations of the community’s rights to land. She also gave a presentation to the ‘Portfolio Committee on International Relations and Cooperation’ in the South African Parliament on Atir-Umm al-Hiran to urge the parliamentarians to exert pressure to prevent the eviction of the villagers. A rallying cry of the anti-apartheid movement in South Africa was “Amandla Ngawethu”, meaning “Power to the People”
See below: Myssana Morany (third from left, top row), Adalah’s Land and Planning attorney with fellow members of the delegation and members of SAJPF.
3. Tour for Al-Haq Summer Law Graduates to Susiya and Atir-Umm al-Hiran
In July 2016, Adalah organized a tour for participants of Al-Haq’s ‘International Law Summer School’. Al-Haq is a leading human rights organization based in Ramallah, West Bank. International post-graduate law students and legal researchers participated in the tour to Susiya, a Bedouin village threatened with demolition in the West Bank and Atir-Umm al-Hiran to learn about the situation from the villagers, and to examine how they can apply international law to protect the communities.
We believe that it is crucial to keep the issue of Atir-Umm al-Hiran on the public agenda through engaging students, particularly those studying law, who will return to research, write and discuss the situation within their academic networks internationally.
4. Have you read the story of ‘The Zeltzers vs. Atir-Umm al-Hiran’?
Download the full infographic that tells the story of two villages that are situated in similar legal terms, yet are treated very differently by the Israeli legal system. If you find the infographic useful, don’t forget to share with friends.
We want to thank you again for your kind support and encouragement over the past quarter. Adalah and the people of Atir-Umm al-Hiran greatly appreciate and need your help to continue to do our crucial work.
Rina Rosenberg (Jabareen)
Director of International Advocacy, Adalah
Rina Rosenberg (Jabareen) (in pink) in Berlin
Myssana with fellow delegation members in SA
The Susiya leg of the tour
Tour in UAH with Raed Abu al-Qi'an, local leader
The Zeltzers vs. Atir-Umm al-Hiran