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Israeli forces detain 4 shepherds, 2 activists in Jordan Valley

March 9, 2019 5:07 P.M. (Updated: March 10, 2019 11:06 A.M.)
(File)
TUBAS (Ma'an) -- Israeli forces detained six Palestinians, on Saturday, from the Farisiyeh area in the northern Jordan Valley in the northern occupied West Bank.

Omar Fuqaha, a Palestinian official in Tubas, reported that Israeli forces detained four Palestinian shepherds and two activists, pointing out that the shepherds were as the shepherds were herding their sheep in al-Farisiyeh.

The two activists were with the shepherds when Israeli settlers chased them out of the fields where they were herding their sheep; Israeli forces then arrived the detained all four shepherds and two activists.

Palestinian residents of the Jordan Valley regularly face evacuations and interruption due to Israeli military exercises on or near their land. The district of Tubas, meanwhile, is one of the occupied West Bank's most important agricultural centers.

The majority of the Jordan Valley is under full Israeli military control, despite being within the West Bank. Meanwhile, at least 44% of the total land in the Jordan Valley has been re-appropriated by Israeli forces for military purposes and training exercises.

Forming a third of the occupied West Bank and with 88 percent of its land classified as Area C, the Jordan Valley has long been a strategic area of land unlikely to return to Palestinians following Israel's occupation in 1967.

Between 500,000 and 600,000 Israelis live in Jewish-only settlements across occupied East Jerusalem and the West Bank in violation of international law, with recent announcements of settlement expansion provoking condemnation from the international community.

The Palestinian government has no jurisdiction over Israelis in the West Bank, and acts carried out by Israeli settlers often occur in the presence of Israeli military forces who rarely act to protect Palestinian residents.
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