QALQILYA, Saturday, The Israeli army prevented on Saturday Palestinian farmers from the village of Kufr Thulth, southeast of the northern West Bank city of Qalqilya, from reaching their land located near the illegal Jewish settlement of Alfei Menashe to harvest their olive crop, according to mayor of Kufr Thulth, Zaki Omar.
He said the army closed the main gates in the fence built around the settlement and adjacent land and prevented more than 50 villagers from accessing their land to pick olives.
Village residents say they have over 3000 dunums of land planted with olive trees in the vicinity of the settlement that was illegally built on seized village land.
The olive harvest season is the most important time for farmers and thousands of Palestinian families who depend on this product for their livelihood.
Interruptions in picking the olives create great hardships for these families, particularly when Israel uses this season to punish entire villages by not allowing them to access their land behind Israel’s annexation and apartheid barrier it has built in the West Bank.
Armed Jewish settlers as well often harass farmers working on their land and usually chase them out of the land and steal their olive crops without the army doing anything to stop them.
Source: Palestinian News & Info Agency