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5 Apr, 2012

Close to Being Wiped Off the Map: Jews Control 85% of Historical Palestine


RAMALLAH, March 29, 2012 (WAFA) – Jews constitute around 52% of the total population living in historical Palestine and utilize more than 85% of the total area of the land, press release issued by the Palestinian Central Bureau of Statistics said Thursday. Arabs make the remaining 48% but are allowed to utilize only 15% of the land, it added.

The report came on the occasion of Land Day, which was observed on March 30 and marks the 36th anniversary for the killing of six Palestinians living inside Israel during a demonstration against Israeli confiscation of 21,000 dunums of land in the Galilee, the Triangle, and the Naqab.

The PCBS said while the Jordan Valley makes up 29% of the West Bank, Israel controls approximately 90% of it. Fewer than 65,000 Palestinians remain there today compared to 9,500 settlers.

The Annexation Wall has a total length of about 757 kilometers, of which 92% are inside the West Bank. According to this route, 733 km2 of Palestinian land were isolated between the Wall and the Green Line in 2010. This comprises approximately 13.0% of the West Bank, of which about 348 km2 were agricultural, said the release.

It added that while Palestinians represent 30% of the population of Jerusalem, they pay 40% of the value of the taxes collected by the municipality. Yet, the Jerusalem municipality only spends 8% on providing services to Palestinians.

There were 474 Israeli settlements, outposts and military bases in the West Bank by the end of 2011. Settlers established 11 new outposts in 2010.

Data indicate that the number of settlers in the West Bank totaled 518,974 at the end of 2010; 262,493 settlers live in Jerusalem governorate and constitute 50.6% of all West Bank settlers. Of these land, 110 km2were confiscated for Israeli settlements and military bases, 250 km2were forest and open areas, and 25 km2 Palestinian built-up land. The Wall isolated 53 localities and affected over three hundred thousand people, particularly communities in Jerusalem where 27 localities affected are home to a quarter of a million people.

Moreover, the Wall besieges 165 localities with a population of more than half a million inhabitant, and Qalqilya city is one of the witnesses on that, said PCBS.

The Israeli occupation authorities demolish Palestinian homes and create obstacles and constraints to the issuance of building permits for Palestinians. According to the Al-Maqdisi Institute, between 2000 and 2011, 1,059 buildings were demolished in East Jerusalem (the areas annexed by Israel in 1967). This has resulted in the displacement of 4,865 people, including 2,537 children.

Data from Israeli human rights organizations indicate that about 25 thousand homes have been demolished in the occupied Palestinian Territory since 1967.

The data indicate an increase in demolitions where residents have to demolish their own homes, 289 residents were forced to demolish their own homes since 2000, on the other hand the year 2010 had the highest rate of self-demolition with 70 demolitions compared to 49 in 2009. In 2011, 20 self-demolitions took place. In many cases, residents do not inform the media and human rights organizations of the demolition.

About 196,178 live in areas of Jerusalem annexed by Israel in 1967. In demographic terms, the proportion of settlers to the Palestinian population in the West Bank was about 20 settlers per 100 Palestinians compared with 68 settlers per 100 Palestinians in Jerusalem governorate.

In March 2012, there were 4033 Palestinian prisoners in Israeli jails, including 178 administrative prisoners and 8 female prisoners. Of these, 49 prisoners have spent more than 20 years in captivity and 15 prisoners have spent more than 27 years in captivity.

Palestine’s Primary Agricultural Product, Olive Oil, Suffers Production Decline

In another announcement, the Palestinian Central of Bureau of Statistics (PCBS) said that the quantity of olive oil extracted in the Palestinian Territory in 2011 fell by 12.6% compared with 2010 to reach 20,754 tons.

The total quantity of olives pressed in 2011 was 93,565.7 tons; of which 19.5% were located in Ramallah and Al-Bireh governorate and 17.5% in Nablus governorate, said PCBS.

While the value added of olive pressing activities in 2010 totaled $8 million, it totaled $7 million in 2011 while intermediate consumption and output of olive presses totaled $2.5 and $9.5 million respectively.

A total of 272 olive presses were operating in the Palestinian Territory, of which 240 were fully automatic presses and 32 were half automatic and traditional presses, added PCBS.

The results show that 1,326 persons participated in olive pressing activities in 2011, of which 70.8% were waged employees with compensation totaling $1 dollars.