Bedouin villages in the Negev
Visit to the non-recognized village of A-Za’arura
We came at the invitation of the A-Nasara family. The home of one of their sons was demolished on 20.10.19. A full report will follow later.
The village is not recognized for now, and its legal status is unclear. About 3000 people receive no services at all – no water, no electricity, no kindergartens or schools. There’s not even a paved access road. Unemployment is high and the despair is evident. They can’t obtain building permits, so either people don’t build and live crowded together or they do build and risk demolition, as happened in this case. At 5 AM police from the Yoav unit broke into the home, searched (without a search warrant) and arrested one of the sons. At the police station he was, of course, beaten and interrogated. Then he was released, and everyone got the message: it’s not worth building. The Yoav police unit was established about a decade earlier specifically to “deal” with “people who build illegally” in the Bedouin villages, as well as in the recognized villages and the towns. Dr. Rafi Davidson undertook to document the trip in video and in writing. He’ll post the video to YouTube and send it separately. A difficult visit to a remote and unfortunate location. Its inhabitants deserve a better life.