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Video: Hebron Bedouins demand freedom of movement, infrastructure

Nov. 16, 2013 9:32 P.M. (Updated: Nov. 26, 2013 1:03 P.M.)
HEBRON (Ma'an) -- Palestinian Bedouins historically moved freely across the land, and their lifestyle and survival depended on their mobility. The Israeli occupation, however, has changed all of this.

Bedouins in a southern West Bank village enumerated the difficulties of life under Israeli occupation during a Ma'an reporter's visit last week.

Al-Hathaleen, a village 15 miles southeast of Hebron, is in Area C, meaning it is under complete Israeli control.

Occupation authorities rarely grant licenses for local vehicles, and often confiscate unlicensed cars, locals said.

The restriction of movement is especially dangerous due to the fact that the nearest hospital is over 10 miles away in Yatta.

The Israeli occupation also rarely grants permits for construction, and therefore Palestinian Bedouins remain stuck in a state of marginality where they are neither able to carry on their traditional lifestyle nor adopt a sedentary one.

A village of refugees from the 1948 Nakba, al-Hathaleen faces dispossession yet again as plans for the expansion of a nearby Israeli settlement loom.

On Friday, Prime Minister Rami Hamdallah announced that Italy had donated 3 million euros to a Palestinian-led initiative to improve infrastructure in Area C villages.

In 2012, 540 Palestinian structures were demolished in Area C due to a lack of Israeli-issued permits, displacing 815 people, over half children, the UN's Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs says.

Less than 1 percent of Area C has been planned for Palestinian development, while some 135 settlements and over 100 outposts have been built in the same area.
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