Following a series of high-profile protests that seemingly ended one iteration of the Prawer Plan, nobody — especially those who would be most affected — knows where the plan to displace tens of thousands of Bedouin Israelis stands today. Social TV visits two unrecognized Bedouin villages in the Negev, Al-Araqib and Alsira, to see how people live under the threat of displacement. Read +972's full coverage of the Prawer Plan to displace Bedouin Read +972's full coverage of the Prawer Plan to displace BedouinRead More...
The Prawer-Begin Plan was shelved. But the idea that you can forcefully transfer an indigenous population and determine where it can legally reside -- looks and smells like a plan pulled from the dusty drawer of Hendrik Verwoerd, architect of Apartheid South Africa. And that didn’t work out so well. By Hilla Dayan Sadly, it was too early to celebrate the downfall of the Prawer-Begin Plan. The victory of suspending the Knesset vote following the the “day of rage” protests on November 30 was short lived. The dark threatening cloud of ethnic cleansing still hovers over the Negev's Bedouin population. Nevertheless,…Read More... | 13 Comments
So the Israeli government is scrapping the Prawer Bill. Please allow me to rain on the parade. A few months ago many on the Left celebrated when the Supreme Court declared unconstitutional a law allowing the indefinite detention of asylum seekers. This week, circumventing the court's decision, the government passed a new law allowing the indefinite detention of asylum seekers, only this time in an "open prison." The Bedouin, the Left and the -- not all that large -- protests did not kill the Prawer bill. The Right killed this bill. The current Israeli government did not wake up overnight…Read More... | 10 Comments
The Bill for Arranging Bedouin Settlement in the Negev, more commonly known as the Prawer Plan, has been scrapped, former minister and drafter of the plan Benny Begin announced at a press conference in Tel Aviv on Thursday (Haaretz report). The bill, first introduced in 2011, is a government plan to forcibly relocate some 40,000 Bedouin citizens living in dozens of "unrecognized" villages in Israel's Negev desert, which the government has never agreed to recognize or provide services to. The plan has drawn heavy criticism from both Bedouin citizens and human rights groups. In recent months it has also been…Read More... | 12 Comments
Sheikh Sayah Aturi returned to his home village of Al Araqib today (Tuesday) for the first time since his arrest on November 20. On that day, Al Araqib was demolished for the 62nd time while most of its residents were busy protesting in Jerusalem outside of the Knesset during committee debates on the Prawer Plan. This plan threatens to displace some 40,000 Bedouin citizens of Israel living in "unrecognized" villages in the Negev. As Haggai Matar reported: Village head Sheikh Sayakh was one of the few residents to stay behind, which led Israeli authorities to arrest him for “trespassing” on “state-owned land”…Read More...
Israeli coalition leader Yariv Levin predicted that the cabinet will likely throw out the current version of the Prawer Plan, hours after former minister and co-architect of the plan Benny Begin clarified that he never said Bedouin supported the plan, as some Knesset members originally perceived. “I wish to again make clear that contrary to what has been claimed in recent weeks, I didn’t tell anyone that the Bedouin agreed to my plan,” Begin was quoted as saying in Israeli media. “I couldn’t say that because I didn’t show them the plan. I didn’t present the bill that I revised to…Read More... | 8 Comments
‘The Bedouin will not live on his land with his flock, but rather will be part of the urban class that comes in the afternoon and puts on his slippers,’ Moshe Dayan said in 1963. In the 50 years since, not much has changed regarding Israel's efforts to justify its policy in the Negev: as many Arabs as possible on as little land as possible and as few Jews as possible on as much land as possible. By Avner Ben-Amos (Translated from Hebrew by Mairav Zonszein) Two quotes in the same newspaper, excerpts from interviews with two former military figures,…Read More...
Former minister Benny Begin, who helped draft the Prawer Plan, denies saying Israel's Bedouin support the plan: How could they if they never even saw it? (Click the map to enlarge.) Until now, nobody knew the extent of the Prawer-Begin Plan. No government official or statement has detailed how many Bedouin citizens will be displaced, how many unrecognized villages razed and how much land will be expropriated by the state. MK Dov Khenin (Hadash) on Monday published a copy of a map distributed to members of the Knesset Interior Affairs Committee. The map was prepared by the Prime Minister’s Office…Read More... | 10 Comments
While the Prawer Plan has made international headlines, Israel's Bedouin have suffered from dispossession and discrimination since the state was established. Such is the story of Umm al-Hiran, which will be destroyed so a Jewish town of Hiran can be built in its place. In the unrecognized Bedouin village Umm al-Hiran, 600 people are waiting for the Israeli High Court of Justice to decide their fate. Abed Abu Al-Qia'an is a 49-year-old resident of Umm al-Hiran, which Israel plans to empty and destroy in order to make way for a new Jewish town, Hiran. “The children are panicking. All the…Read More... | 14 Comments
This week: more holes in the separation wall, protests against the Prawer-Begin Plan, tear gas in Nabi Saleh, a Palestinian passport for a Palestinian citizen, soldier protect settler activists, solidarity with Palestine at the UN, marching against violence against women, Greenpeace targets GMOs in Israeli supermarkets, and clashes after Israeli forces kill three Palestinian militants.Read More... | 2 Comments
Bedouin activists call for general strike, protests to meet MK Miri Regev and Knesset Interior Committee as they tour areas that will be affected by the Prawer-Begin Plan. Text by Michael Omer-Man Photos by Oren Ziv and Yotam Ronen / Activestills.org (Correction amended below) As part of its discussions aimed at advancing the Prawer-Begin Plan that would result in the mass displacement of Israel’s Bedouin citizens, the Knesset Internal Affairs Committee toured the Negev desert on Sunday. In formulating the Prawer plan, the Bedouin community was not consulted and an alternative formulated by Bedouin leaders was not considered. Read +972's…Read More... | 5 Comments
The Jewish National Fund has in the past been caught lying about its role in East Jerusalem evictions of Palestinians. Now its role in Israeli land policy in the Negev is revealed to be much larger than it admits. A former JNF board member demands the organization take responsibility for its actions. By Seth Morrison For many years the Jewish National Fund (KKL/JNF), the group known largely for planting trees in Israel, has denied any involvement in taking Bedouin land as part of its efforts to Judaize the Negev. Its website says, “KKL-JNF develops land only in areas designated in the…Read More... | 5 Comments
As nearly 40,000 Bedouins face displacement from their homes as a result of the Begin-Prawer plan, when propagandists on behalf of the state are circulating lies about the 'Bedouin invasion of national land,' it is important to hear the historical facts from an expert who has been living in the region for many years. Guest-post by Dan Gazit, from Idan Landau’s blog (translated by Ofer Neiman) Dan Gazit, 76 years old, is an archaeologist from Kibbutz Gvulot, who has done a lot to discover and preserve the ancient history of the Bsor region. He regularly writes about his archaeological findings…Read More... | 2 Comments
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