The Bedouin have lived in the Naqab (Negev) since the 7th century. After Israel's founding, they were moved over and over. Their land claims, which were previously accepted, are being ignored. Although they are 30% of the population of the Naqab, they live now only on 2% of the land. The Israeli government is in the process of passing the Prawer Plan Law, which will displace tens of thousands of Bedouin from their homes to make way for military zones, parks, and Jewish-only designated towns.
The Bedouin community is mobilizing a grassroots movement to stop the Prawer Plan. But in order to succeed, they need to be better aware of their rights and have legal representation in courts. This project will provide legal support, offer human rights training to the community, raise awareness among decision-makers, and will reach out to local and international media. This comprehensive approach is the only way to stop the ongoing forced displacement of the Bedouin.
Stopping the demolition of Bedouin homes will not only protect the community's basic rights. It will also open up a discussion in Israel on recognizing Bedouin villages, protecting their ancestral lands and homes, and understanding their history and narrative in the Naqab. No state can function without granting basic human rights to its minorities. Ending the forced displacement of the Bedouin citizens of Israel is a step towards achieving justice in the Middle East.