Jewish settlers burnt or uprooted 7500 olives trees in 9 months 27Oct11 October 27, 2011

The Palestinian Information Centre  -  27 October 2011

RAMALLAH, (PIC)– Jewish settlers burnt or uprooted 7500 Palestinian olive trees in the first nine month of 2011, a report by the UN office for the coordination of humanitarian affairs in the occupied territories (OCHA) said on Tuesday.

The report documents the damage of thousands of dunums of Palestinian agricultural fields cultivated with olives.

It said that Palestinians’ access to their olive fields near 55 settlements in the West Bank was limited to certain periods in the year and in the presence of Israeli occupation forces.

It noted that the Israelis turn down 40% of requests by Palestinian farmers to “visit” their fields located beyond the separation wall.

OCHA pointed out that Palestinian farmers in the Gaza Strip suffer from the same complications when trying to approach their fields near to the border fence.

It said that thousands of farmers are deprived of reaching their land for “security reasons” or for failure to meet the Israeli requirements to prove that those are their lands.

The report underlined that 45% of all Palestinian farmlands are cultivated with 12 million olive trees, mostly in the West Bank, adding that the olive oil industry provides one quarter of the overall agricultural revenues in Palestine on which 100000 families depend for their sustenance.

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