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Israeli settlers and military assault farmers, internationals heading to harvest

Oct. 27, 2008 11:02 A.M. (Updated: Oct. 27, 2008 11:02 A.M.)
Hebron - Ma'an - Israeli settlers accompanied by Israeli military forces prevented Palestinian farmers from Karma village near Hebron from harvesting their olives, according to the Union of Agricultural Work Committees (UAWC).

The group released a statement on Monday explaining that the farmers, whose lands are near the Israeli settlement of Otni'el, were assaulted along with volunteers who had accompanied them to the fields for the harvest.

Several were detained for hours under the pretext that they entered a restricted military zone.

A campaign to help farmers pick their olives began on 15 October, and will continue until 13 November. It aims at assisting farmers across the West Bank in accessing lands close to Israeli settlements and military posts. Several organizations have participated in the campaign including the UAWC, the French Solidarity Association and the Palestinian committee for defending lands. The campaign is funded by Norwegian grassroots associations.

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