Stop Eviction of One Hundred Year Old Israeli Bedouin Musa Hussein
Update: The tragic and unnecessary events of Wednesday,January 18th underscore the importance of this campaign asking you to email and/or fax a picture of 100 year old Israeli Negev Bedouin citizen Musa Hussein Abu Al Qian, slated to be evicted from his home so that a Jewish community can be built on the rubble of his. (Details of the campaign follow this update. You can also click on the right to go straight to sending an email.) He was one of the thirty Umm Al Hiran residents served with eviction/demolition orders carried out on Wednesday. Although Musa and his home were spared, perhaps in part because of this campaign, his son was killed. We must do better in order to bring Israel back to the negotiating table with a willingness to commit to a fair solution for Musa and the rest of the Umm Al Hiran residents, including those who are now homeless.
A military style police invasion of Umm Al Hiran by hundreds of heavily armed police officers lead to two deaths, Members of Knesset and several others injured,homes and livelihood structures demolished, incredbile anger and much disinformation. Police were violent from the start. Villager Ya'akub Musa Abu Al-Qi'an, a 50-year-old math teacher, was shot and killed by police, and his car hit and killed an Israeli police officer while he was behind the wheel. The police claim that Ya'aqub was attacking the police, but also acknowledge that shots were fired before the vehicle careened out of control towards officers. Eye witnesses and police video raise the very real possibility that Ya'akub lost control lost control of the vehicle after he had already been shot. MK Joint List member Ayman Odeh was injured in the head and shot in the back with a sponge-tipped bullet while attempting to retreat, but is expected to make a full recovery. Many were pepper sprayed and/or struck by rifles.
This incident would never have happened if Israel were honoring committments made to the Bedouin in 1956, (See below), rather than commence with plans to build Jewish "Hiran" on the rubble of Bedouin "Umm Al Hiran" It would not have happened had the State accepted one of the several solutions Umm Al Hiran residents had suggested allowing them to continue their Bedouin lifestyle. Some of them Israel had initially seemed to agree to, but then pulled back. This incident would not have taken place had the State not made the decision in December to begin issuing eviction/demolition orders, and insist that residents move without any agreement. For the first time, Israel presented Umm Al Hiran residents with a concrete proposal two days before the tragedy. It was much less than what had been offered orally, and had been close to meeting the residents' minimum needs. Initially they said, "Take it, or leave it, and we continue with eviction/demolition plans." Renewed discussions continued until midnight the previous evening. Rather than allow those discussions to cointinue, the police arrived several hours later. The incident never would have happened, if Israeli Arabs were treated as equal citizens.
One hundred year old Israeli Bedouin citizen Musa Hussein Abu Al Qian was present in 1956 when Israeli minorities officer Haim Tzuri showed the Abu Al Qian tribe the lands Israel was promising them in return for the lands they had been evicted from. Here, they could rebuild their lives. When we were young we were taught that promises must be kept.
ON JANUARY 16th, EVICTION ORDERS WENT INTO EFFECT. IT IS LIKELY THEY WILL BE CARRIED OUT ON THE 18th, FORCING MUSA AND OTHER FAMILY MEMBERS FROM THEIR HOMES SIMPLY BECAUSE THEY AREN'T JEWISH.
PLEASE EMAIL OR FAX MUSA'S PICTURE TO YOUR NEAREST ISRAELI EMBASSY OR CONSULATE IN ORDER TO PREVENT THIS INJUSTICE. ISRAELIS CAN CALL/WRITE/EMAIL THE NEGEV BEDOUIN DEVELOPMENT AUTHORITY.
Since August 2015, JNF bulldozers have been working to create Jewish "Hiran" on the rubble of Bedouin Umm Al Hiran. Umm Al Hiran residents are willing to live in a mixed community with Jewish neighbors, an adjacent community, or anything other than being forced to move into the nearby Bedouin township of Hura, and give up their way of life. In Hura, the very pro government municipality says that they have no room because they have a waiting list of 2,000 for the 140 available plots. They have gone to court to stop the allocation of plots to others. Advanced negotiations on a mutually agreed upon new location broke down when Israel insisted that the Bedouin move to Hura now, with no agreement, and then they would continue the discussions. Umm Al Hiran residents fear that if they agree, the government will never speak to them again. Israel's High Court ruled that justice is with the Abu Al Qian tribe, but they appealed to the Court "too late."
Now, Israel is speaking to its Bedouin citizens with eviction/demolition orders, fines and threats that they will be billed for the demolition of their own homes. Seventy-four year old Ahmed Abu Al Qian and thirty family members were already pressured to "agree" to move, and are living in tin shacks in Hura. Musa and thirty additional family members are next in line. After that, 98 year old Amna....
For Additional Background Information:
- Hebrew analysis by two of Israel's top legal experts, Professors Mordechai Kremnitzer and Hanoch Dagan: https://www.idi.org.il/articles/3406
I ask everyone to print Musa Abu Al Qian's photo and fax it to the Israeli Embassy or Consulate in your country with a hand-written message urging the Government of Israel to freeze eviction/demolition orders and resume negotiations. If you can't fax, use this site to email. In Israel, please send to the Negev Bedouin Development Authority. We are taught, "When nobody is acting with human decency, you must be that person." (Pirkei Avot). We can and must stop this injustice.
— Rabbi Arik Ascherman, co-founder of Haqel: Jews and Arabs for Human Rights
- Here is the photo to download, print and fax: http://bit.ly/2iz7Nmv
- Contact information for all Israeli missions around the world can be found at: http://embassies.gov.il/Pages/IsraeliMissionsAroundTheWorld.aspx?regionid=5
- Here are the fax numbers to the President of Israel and to Israel's Embassies to the EU, UK, and Canada :
President of the State of Israel Reuven Rivlin: Fax (+972) 2 5887225
Mr. Rafael Barak, Ambassador to Canada: Fax +1(613) 750-7555
Phone (+1) (613) 750-7500
- Here are the fax numbers for Israel's U.S. Consulates (We have no fax for Israel's U.S. Embassy, but you can email through this site):
Israel Consulate in Atlanta Fax+404-487-6555
Israel Consulate in Boston, MA Fax+617-535-0255
Israel Consulate in Chicago, IL Fax+312-380-8855
Israel Consulate in Los Angeles, CA Fax+323-852-5555
Israel Consulate in Florida Fax+305-925-9455
Israel Consulate in San Francisco, CA Fax+415-844-7555
Israel Consulate in New York, NY Fax+212-4995355
Israel Consulate in Houston, TX Fax+713-627-0149
Israel Consulate in Philadelphia, PA Fax+267-479-5855
The Negev Bedouin Development Authority: Telephone: 972 8-6268700, Fax: 972 8-9157298, Email: Rb_pniot@moag.gov.il
|Next, please email Mr. Musa's photo and a letter to Israeli Embassies. To do this, please sign and send the letter on the right side of your screen, or find additional embassies at http://embassies.gov.il/Pages/IsraeliMissionsAroundTheWorld.aspx?regionid=1. Lastly, tweet your action using the following hash tags:|