BETHLEHEM, March 14, 2015 (WAFA) – Israeli settlers Saturday uprooted a number of olive saplings belonging to a local Palestinian resident in al-Khader village to the south of Bethlehem, said a local activist.
Coordinator of the Popular Committee against the Wall and Settlement Ahmad Salah told WAFA that, protected by Israeli forces, a group of settlers forced a Palestinian farmer to leave his farmland located the west of the town and adjacent to the illegal Israeli settlement outpost of ‘Sidi Boaz’ before proceeding to uproot a number of olive saplings.
The land belongs to Ahmad Sbeih, 48.
The local activist stressed that Israeli settlers and forces’ have recently escalated their attacks against the village residents in an aim to force them to leave their land as a prelude to take over it for the benefit of settlement expansion.
Israeli forces often target Palestinians and their property or provide protection to settlers conducting attacks on Palestinian residents’ land; including the burning and uprooting of trees.
According to a United Nations’ OCHA report, ‘Israeli settlers damaged over 5,500 Palestinian-owned olive trees and saplings in the period between December 30 2014, and January 12, 2015.”