'Atil, Deir al-Ghusun

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Yehudit Katz, Osnat Alon, Michal Ben-Gera, Pitzy (reporting), Nadim (driving). Translator: Charles K.



We wanted to start at the Anabta municipality but its head firmly refused to meet us.  We should note that Anabta has almost no contact with settlers or even with the army because it’s located far from the fence and the settlements.


We continued to Deir Luhsun.  We wanted to learn what’s new.  The chairman was busy; H., the municipal engineer, received us.


The problems he presented are familiar.  But there’s an additional one:  three years ago heavy rains fell.  The silt blocked the security fence and created drainage problems.  The water creates “swamps.”  That happens in a large stream flowing from the Jenin area to the Mediterranean.  It used to be called
Wadi Masin, but now it’s called Nahal Haviva, after Haviva Reich…


Someone must be approached to clean up the fence area and free the flow.  Who?


A middle-aged man entered the office.  He showed us documents he has received from the DCL and wanted us to explain what they said.


Here’s the story:  A family member, aged 46, applied for a seam-zone permit to work the family’s land.  The problem is, as usual, that the land is registered in his parents’ names.  The man showed us the documents confirming this.  His application was denied.  The reason:  he hadn’t proved ownership.  But he’s the son, and the land is obviously also his.  The parents are elderly and want their son to help with the farming.  But that’s not approved.


We asked about the young people of the village, what they do after they finish school.


Once they worked in Israel, says H., now there are no permits.  Some go to Ramallah, some abroad to the Gulf States or Jordan.  Some apply to the Palestinian Authority, but there are no jobs there either.  There were 40,000 applicants for 1,000 positions…


Since there’s no unemployment insurance in the Palestinian Authority, many of the young people are very poor.  There are some families who only eat pita and drink tea to break the Ramadan fast because they haven’t money for the traditional meal.


We drive to the gatesinfo-icon near Deir Luhsun an ‘Atil – 623 and 609.  There’s almost no traffic at this hour of the afternoon.  The gates opened on time.