Palestinians in Beirut stage sit-in in rejection of Prawer plan | #StopPrawerPlan

[ PIC 20/07/2013 – 11:50 AM ]


BEIRUT, (PIC)– Palestinian factions in Burj al-Barajneh refugee camp in Beirut organized a sit-in on Friday in rejection of the Israeli Prawer settlement plan, which forcibly displaces thousands of Palestinians and destroys dozens of villages.

Mashhour Abdel Halim, member of the political leadership in Hamas’s office in Lebanon, warned of the consequences and dangers of Prawer project, and called for resisting it by all means.

Member of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine Fouad Dhaher announced the front’s rejection of the project. He criticized the policy of normalization with the occupation, and stressed that the Palestinians are united against the settlement and will never give up their land.

Prawer plan is one of the most dangerous plans to displace the Arabs of the Negev and the most serious Judaization project so far. Israel considers the Negev a natural site for the development of industry, tourism and agriculture, and for absorbing hundreds of thousands of Jewish immigrants coming from around the world.

According to Israeli Professor Ermeyeho Bernoar, about 250 thousand of new Jewish immigrants are expected to settle in the Negev region.

Dr. Thabet Abu Ras, director of the Adaleh Center for Palestinian Rights in the Negev, told PIC correspondent: “The Negev has an area of 12,800 square kilometers, about 58% of the area currently occupied by Israel, and more than 47% of the area of the historic Palestine. Only 10% of the population lives in the region.”

Abu Ras said that Prawer plan includes forcing the Palestinians in the Negev to give up 50% of their land, demolishing villages and deporting tens of thousands of citizens.

For his part, Mr. Attia al-A’sam the head of the Regional Council for the Unrecognized Villages in the Negev stated: “The successive Israeli governments have approved 18 laws for the confiscation of Arab lands in the Negev. 10 thousand Arab houses have been demolished so far in the Negev.”

He added that the occupation state is currently threatening at least 42 thousand Arab houses inhabited by about 85 thousand people with demolition.

Al-A’sam stressed that the occupation authorities and governments have been trying since 1948 to Judaize the Negev region, and displace its indigenous population by besieging the residents in an isolated area, grabbing the lands, preventing the water and electricity supplies and other services in the Negev villages, demolishing the houses and farms, and closing large areas of land with no reasons.

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Full text of the Prawer Plan

What is the Prawer Plan

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Demolition and Eviction of Bedouin Citizens of Israel in the Naqab (Negev) – The Prawer Plan


On 24 June 2013, the Israeli Knesset approved the discriminatory Prawer-Begin Bill, with 43 votes for and 40 votes against, for the mass expulsion of the Arab Bedouin community in the Naqab (Negev) desert in the south of Israel.If fully implemented, the Prawer-Begin Plan will result in the destruction of 35 “unrecognized”Arab Bedouin villages, the forced displacement of up to 70,000 Arab Bedouin citizens of Israel, and the dispossession of their historical lands in the Naqab. Despite the Arab Bedouin community’s complete rejection of the plan and strong disapproval from the international community and human rights groups, the Prawer Plan is happening now.

The Prawer-Begin Bill is an unacceptable proposition that entrenches the state’s historic injustice against its Bedouin citizens. Adalah and our NGO partners have been challenging the Prawer Plan before courts, government authorities and the international community, but we need your help to stop what would be the largest single act of forced displacement of Arab citizens of Israel since the 1950s!

Please sign our petition and visit our Facebook page to find out what you can do to Stop the Prawer Plan!

What is the Prawer Plan?

Arab Bedouin citizens of Israel, inhabitants of the Naqab (Negev) desert since the seventh century, are the most vulnerable community in Israel. For over 60 years, the indigenous Arab Bedouin have faced a state policy of displacement, home demolitions and dispossession of their ancestral land. Today, 70,000 Arab Bedouin citizens live in 35 villages that either predate the establishment of the State in 1948, or were created by Israeli military order in the early 1950s. The State of Israel considers the villages “unrecognized” and the inhabitants “trespassers on State land,” so it denies the citizens access to state infrastructure like water, electricity, sewage, education, health care and roads. The state deliberately withholds basic services from these villages to “encourage” the Arab Bedouin citizens to give up their ancestral land. If Israel applied the same criteria for planning and development that exist in the Jewish rural sector, all 35 unrecognized villages would be recognized where they are.
In September 2011, the Israeli government approved the Prawer Plan, the brainchild of former Deputy Chair of the National Security Council, Mr. Ehud Prawer. The Prawer Plan will result in the destruction of the unrecognized villages and the forced displacement of up to 70,000 Arab Bedouin citizens. This plan was completed without consultation of the local community, and is a gross violation of the constitutional rights of the Arab Bedouin citizens to property, dignity, equality, adequate housing, and freedom to choose their own residence.

Prawer is Happening Now
Despite complete rejection of the plan by the Arab Bedouin, and strong disapproval from the international community, Prawer is happening now. More than 1,000 houses were demolished in 2011 alone, and civil society observed the same practices in 2012. Since Prawer was announced, the government announced plans that will displace over 10,000 people and plant forests, build military centers, and establish new Jewish settlements in their place.

The Prawer Plan is today being turned into an Israeli law. On 6 May 2013, the Ministerial Committee on Legislation approved the proposed “Law for the Regulation of Bedouin Settlement in the Negev – 2013” (“the Prawer-Begin Bill”, after recommendations by Minister Benny Begin were included). On 24 June 2013, the Knesset approved the Prawer-Begin Bill with 43 votes for and 40 votes against. The bill will now be sent to the Committee for Interior Affairs and Environment to be prepared for the second and third readings.

The international community has repeatedly expressed its opposition to the Prawer Plan. In March 2012, the UN Committee on the Elimination for Racial Discrimination called on Israel to withdraw the proposed implementing legislation of the Prawer Plan, on the grounds that it was discriminatory. In July 2012, the European Parliament passed a historic resolution calling on Israel to Stop the Prawer Plan and its policies of displacement, eviction, and dispossession.

Adalah calls on the Israeli government to:
  • Cancel the Prawer Plan
  • Recognize the “unrecognized villages” and the land claims of the indigenous Arab Bedouin community
  • Halt home demolitions and forced evictions
  • Engage in meaningful dialogue with the Arab Bedouin community and the Arab political leadership to justly resolve the land claims
  • Invest in greater health, education, and employment opportunities for Arab Bedouin citizens of Israel

Find out More:

Factsheet: Myths and Misconceptions about the Arab Bedouin in the Naqab
Article: Four Reasons to Reject the Prawer Plan, by Dr. Thabet Abu Rass and Professor Oren Yiftachel

Briefing/Position Papers:
Briefing Paper: Understanding the Prawer Plan Law, 2012
Briefing Paper: Analysis of the Prawer Plan, October 2011


International responses
EMHRN Statement: Time for EU action on Prawer Bill, 2 July 2013
UN CERD Calls on Israel to Withdraw the Prawer Plan Law, 15 March 2012
European Parliament Passes Resolution Calling on Israel to Stop the Prawer Plan

Press Releases

Related in Media

  • ‘When I look at the Prawer Plan, I see another Nakba’ – Source
  • 2005: advisor to Peres already told US Negev “development” plan meant “relocation” of 65,000 Bedouin – Source
  • All the Facts About Bedouin Settlement of the Negev ~ by Rabbis for Human Rights
  • Adalah “Palestinian community prepares for General Strike against the Prawer Plan, get to know the people – Source
  • Every Red Dot on map: 1 of Palestine’s towns eradicated from earth. Now Israel wants to eradicate 45 more towns. – Source
  • Stand with @rhreng and support Bedouin rights! – Source
  • Amnesty International labels Prawer-Begin Bill as racist – More

Related: Israel. Not looking for Peace. Nor Talks. But this… ~ The Facts

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