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Settlers destroy 70 olive trees near Hebron

Feb. 9, 2015 4:41 P.M. (Updated: Feb. 10, 2015 9:36 P.M.)
HEBRON (Ma'an) -- Settlers cut down over 70 Palestinian olive trees in the Hebron district on Monday, locals said.

Witnesses told Ma'an that the settlers destroyed over 70 tree saplings near the town of Sair.

The trees had been planted a week ago in an area threatened with annexation near the illegal settlement of Metzad, located in the Gush Etzion bloc west of Bethlehem.

Locals have organized a campaign to replant the trees.

Attacks on olive trees are a key way that Palestinians are forced out of their homes and their lands confiscated for settlement construction, as the loss of a year's crop can signal destitution for many.

The olive industry supports the livelihoods of roughly 80,000 families in the occupied West Bank.

Since 1967, approximately 800,000 olive trees have been uprooted in the occupied West Bank, according to a joint report by the Palestinian Authority and the Applied Research Institute Jerusalem.
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