Farmer story: Yassen Da'adua - Al-Khader village - Bethlehem area

Category: Campaign Farmers' Stories Created: 31 July 2014

Yasin wsYassen is a 54 year old farmer, born in Al-Kadher village to the south of Bethlehem. He owns 54 dunums of land, and used to depend on this land for his livelihood, using the production and sale of crops from it to support his family and feed his children. Due to Israeli settlement expansion, Yassen cannot access his land or move freely upon it. Today, his land is surrounded by two large settlements, Aleazar and Alon Shvot, and the settlers living there harass him and attack his fields, uprooting his trees and destroying his crops. Over the last 3 years, the Olive Tree Campaign has supported Yassen in his attempts to remain on his land and support his family, by helping to plant 1300 olive trees on his land. 

In April 2014, the settlers uprooted 100 of these olive trees, and the government issued orders that resulted in his water well being demolished. A sign was put up on some of his land, announcing that approximately 10 dunums of his land was to become state land. When he inquired into the reason for this, he was told that it was confiscated for use as a security zone for the settlement, and he was not allowed to access it. Yassen still owns most of his land, but has to maintain a presence there daily to prevent more being confiscated. In the last olive planting program, 55 participants went to plant olive trees on Yassen's land, and provide him with a protective civil international presence. They helped him to plant 500 new olive trees on his land.