West Bank archeological site altered to suit Israeli settlers, says official

NABLUS, Khirbet el-Qasr, an archeological site to the south of the village of Jaloud in the north of the occupied West Bank, has repeatedly been tampered with by Israeli settlers to a point its historical structures and landscape have been altered, Ghassan Daghlas, an official monitoring Israeli settlement activities in the north of the West Bank, said on Wednesday.

He told WAFA that recent photos of the site showed the extent of alterations the settlers have made to it, particularly its landscape.

He said settlers uprooted dozens of century-old olive, fig and almond trees and razed land to make space for their ceremonies.

Khirbet al-Qasr is surrounded by three illegal settler outposts – Esh Kodesh, Kida and Ahiya – and includes a number of caves and old water wells. Its area is around 50 dunums and it is surrounded by hundreds of dunums of agriculture land.

The site is 800 meters above sea level and has relics from the Canaanite, Roman, Byzantine and Ayyoubi periods. It is composed of several buildings that represent the various periods in history as well as wells, water basins and caves.

Daghlas noted that Israel has been preventing Palestinians from entering that area since 2001 under the pretext it is located near the settlements.

Source: Palestinian News and Info Agency