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Our Greater Jerusalem tour seeks to expose the conflict so clearly embodied in Israeli Zionist concept of ‘Greater Jerusalem’.
Post-1967 government officials and army bureaucrats expanded Jerusalem’s municipality borders to include as much agricultural and ‘open land’ as possible while leaving out the towns and villages who relied on the land for their income and livelihood.
We meet in Shiekh Jarrah for a briefing on the conflict and concept of Greater Jerusalem and will then continue to Pisgat Ze’ev the largest residential settlement in Jerusalem with a population of over 50,000. The Israeli West Bank barrier includes Pisgat Ze’ev in the northern section of Jerusalem while excluding Shuafat refugee camp from the city by running in an S-shape here. We then continue on to HIzme, a Palestinian town seven kilometers from Jerusalem’s Old City. The town, located in Area B, borders the Israeli settlements Neve Yaakov, Pisgat Ze’ev, Geva Binyamin and Almon. The village is cut off from Jerusalem by the Separation Wall in the west, which is built in 2005 on land taken from Palestinian owners. We then travel to Khan al Ahmar where in the early 1950s, Bedouin of the Jahalin tribe were relocated from the Tal Arad (Tel Arad) area of the Negev in southern Israel to the West Bank. The communities in this area face continuous threat and implementation of demolitions, forced displacement and fragmentation of their community. Displaced refugees they are currently spread out in a around 19 encampments with a tribe living in close proximity to the Abu Dis landfill. From there we reach Maale Adumim, originally a Nahal outpost and today an illegal settlement of around 39,000. Our last stop is Shuaafat Refugee camp. Founded in 1964 by the United Nations Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA) the camp is now home to above 18,000 registered refugees.It is the only Palestinian refugee camp located inside Jerusalem or any other Israeli-administered area