World, middle east

Israel bulldozes Palestinian olive grove in West Bank

Israel continues to purloin West Bank farmland on pretext it falls within ‘Area C’, Palestinians say

  | 21.01.2019
Israel bulldozes Palestinian olive grove in West Bank FILE PHOTO

By Qais Abu Samra

BETHLEHEM, Palestine

Israeli bulldozers on Monday flattened a tract of Palestinian farmland -- including 60 olive trees -- in the occupied West Bank, local residents said.

An Israeli force accompanied by army bulldozers raided the village of Battir in the southern West Bank, village council chief Taysir Qattoush told Anadolu Agency.

Qattoush described the targeted farmland as "private property owned by local residents”.

He went on to accuse the Israeli authorities of frequently purloining Palestinian land on the pretext that it falls within “Area C” of the West Bank.

Under the 1995 Oslo agreement between Israel and the Palestinian Authority (PA), the West Bank -- including East Jerusalem -- was divided into Areas A, B and C.

“Area A” falls under the administrative and security control of the PA; “Area B” falls under the administrative control of the PA and the security control of Israel; and “Area C” falls under Israel’s exclusive administrative and security control.

“Area C” is currently home to some 300,000 Palestinians, the vast majority of whom are Bedouin nomads who make their living through animal husbandry.

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