17 October 2009
For immediate release:
Iraq Burin has achieved the first success of its kind, in which the District Co-ordination Office has entered in to an agreement with the village to return 30 dunums of contested farmland to its rightful owners. It comes on the heels of four fiery weekly demonstrations, where local protesters and international activists came together to protest illegal land annexation and settlement expansion in the West Bank.
The land in question lies in Area C on the edge of Iraq Burin next to the illegal settlement of Mar-Barcha, just south of Nablus. Mayor Abu Haitham has stated the DCO expressed a desire to lease the land from the village but rejected the offer, in favour of the four families owning segments of the 30 dunums and wish only to recommence its cultivation.
The village was subject to a visit from the Israeli Occupation Forces on the night of Sunday, 11 October, following an attack on an unmanned military outpost in village farmland nearby the settlement. Two jeeps entered the village to raid a total of 7 houses, firing tear gas inside four and causing damage to the exterior of all. No arrests were made as the soldiers searched in vain for wanted men.
This Sunday, 18 October, a tree-planting action is planned for the village. Locals and international groups will once again join forces in an affirmation of the village’s inspiring success and begin re-claiming the returned land by the plantation of 45 olive trees. Demonstrators will meet at 8am in the village center to march to the land and begin its cultivation.