Volunteers and employees from Rabbis For Human Rights were attacked not long ago by settlers from the Itamar settlement, while the volunteers were assisting Palestinian farmers harvesting their olives in the village of Awarta in the West Bank.
The attackers who arrived on foot and on “tractoronim” (small tractors used for racing) sprayed pepper gas at the harvesters. One of the employees of RHR was hurt and needed medical assistance. Volunteers with RHR reported that there was an army presence at the time but that the soldiers barely intervened. Continue reading →
One of the major focuses of Rabbis for Human Rights work in the Occupied Territories is ensuring Palestinian farmers are given full, safe access to their lands. This is especially relevant for farmers with land near settlements, unauthorised outposts, or near the Separation Barrier. We offer our assistance throughout the calendar, but the most concentrated time of year for this work comes in fall during the olive harvest.
During this time, we bring hundreds of volunteers to work side-by-side with Palestinian farmers. Our presence provides protection against possible settler intimidation, enables farmers to pick within the limited number of days that they can safely do so, and has also become an act of solidarity between Israeli Jews and Palestinians. In the fall of 2019, RHR brought out over 600 volunteers —both international and local — for more than thirty days of work in olive groves in the northern West Bank