HaMoked to the military: cancel at once the instruction forbidding entry of farmers to their plots inside the "seam zone" המוקד להגנת הפרט
06.08.2014
HaMoked to the military: cancel at once the instruction forbidding entry of farmers to their plots inside the "seam zone"
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Palestinian farmers whose plots are in the West Bank areas trapped between the separation wall and the Green Line – areas Israel designates the "seam zone" – must obtain a military permit in advance in order to reach their plots. While a few dozen crossing points have been established in the separation wall to connect between the separated areas of the West Bank, every permit lists the name of just one gate, the one closest to the home community of the permit holder, and he or she may pass from one side of the wall to the other only through that specific gate.

HaMoked has received complaints that in recent days, the military has been prohibiting farmers holding "seam zone" entry permits from passing through Gate 300 in the Jenin District. Inquiries made with one of the soldiers at the Jenin District Coordination Office (DCO) indicate that farmers' passage has been banned following incidents of stone throwing that happened near the gate, and that the ban is indefinite. The soldier also told that Palestinians who hold certificates of "permanent resident in the seam zone" are allowed to pass through Gate 300 as usual.

On August 5, 2014, HaMoked sent an urgent letter to the military demanding that the ban on passage through this gate by farmers seeking to work their plots be lifted immediately. HaMoked asserts that banning passage through this gate constitutes collective punishment prohibited in international law, and that preventing farmers from reaching their plots inside the "seam zone" causes a severe and disproportionate harm to their livelihood and to their rights to property, freedom of occupation and freedom of movement. HaMoked added that arbitrarily banning entry for reasons unrelated to the farmers, over which they have no control, is a degrading act amounting to a violation of human dignity.

On August 6, 2014, the ban was removed, and Gate 300 opened for passage of farmers.
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