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Workshop on the Separation Wall: “The Wall is not a security but a political border, creating apartheid on the Palestinian citizens in Al-Quds.”

 Friday 16 November 2007, 07:23 PM

Participants discussed the Separation Wall in Al-Quds and came out with recommendations to resolve the situation there, at a workshop during the morning session on the second day of the forum.

“[The Wall] has removed from Al-Quds 100,000 of its citizens, helping in getting rid of the largest number possible of its Palestinian citizens in order to change its demography,” said Azzam Abul Su’ud, head of the Chamber of Commerce and Industry in Al-Quds.

It is expected that in 2045, the Palestinian population will be eight million individuals while the Israeli population will be about five million; they are afraid of this and are trying to postpone this from happening,” he added.

The participants went on to discuss the negative effects caused by the Wall on the lives of the Palestinians.

“Of the 100,000 forced outside of Al-Quds, 25,000 of them have been able to return without being able to build houses. Serious social problems have been caused by the increased population density in the limited available residence within the city,” said Abul Su’ud.

The economic problems caused by the Wall were also discussed. “Moving out of the city has caused the population to turn to surrounding areas for their commercial needs instead of carrying them out in Al-Quds. This has lead to a 30% drop in the economy compared to its value in 1992,” said Abul Sau’ud.
The legal aspect was also touched upon during the workshop. “The Wall can even be considered a crime against humanity as it violates human rights; it is not a single violation but a series of violations,” said Mousa Dawaik, another participant in the workshop.

Several of the participants focused on the Separation Wall being a wall of apartheid that was created for political and not security reasons.

“The Wall is not a security but a political border, creating apartheid on the Palestinian citizens in Al-Quds. We are against it, but if it was for security reasons why was it not put on the green line?” said Dawaik, explaining that Israelis use the security issue to manipulate the international community to support them.

After discussing the situation in Al-Quds and the hardships created by the Separation Wall, the participants of the workshop moved to discussing recommendations on solving the problems discussed at the beginning.

“The media is a significant means by which we can communicate the human rights violations it has created on the Palestinian citizens of Al-Quds. This is a means of great potential in conveying our cause; the Arabs have not used it well yet,” said Dawaik.

Other than using the media as a channel to communicate the Palestinian cause and to create awareness about it, the participants recommended that a committee be created to discuss what should be done with this wall. 

This committee is to continue to follow up on all aspects related to the Separation Wall. It was also recommended that such committees be set up in each country on a regional or global level.

The participants also advised several other points including the trying of all Arab and Palestinian companies that contributed in the building of the Separation Wall.

Most of the participants found it necessary to create an annual event on July 9 in remembrance of the 2004 International Court of Justice ruling in the Hague that the Separation Wall put up by Israel went against international law and violated the rights of the Palestine people.

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