• Indigenous peoples in Israel

    Indigenous peoples in Israel

    Bedouins are the indigenous people of Israel. Their indigenous status is not officially recognised by the State of Israel and the Bedouins are politically, socially, economically and culturally marginalised from the rest of the Israeli population, especially challenged in terms of forced displacement.
  • Peoples

    150,000 Bedouins live in seven townships and 11 villages that have been “recognized” over the last decade
  • Rights

    2007: Israel was absent in the vote on the UN Declaration of the Rights of Indigenous Peoples
  • Conditions

    75,000 Bedouins live in 35 “unrecognized villages”, which lack basic services and infrastructure
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  • Israel: 40.000 Negev Beduins risk forced resettlement

Israel: 40.000 Negev Beduins risk forced resettlement

Against the roar of Israeli military jets from a nearby airbase, Khalil Alamour considers what it means to be a Bedouin. "To be part of a family and tribe, to have open space, to have freedom to live in the traditional agricultural way that our forefathers lived in, to maintain our traditions and values, to be generous and offer good hospitality, to be patient, to help each other, to be human.

The importance of the land is enormous, people are connected to the land, it is part of our dignity." But the Bedouin's ancestral way of life in the Negev, a vast desert area in southern Israel, is facing a new threat from attempts to clear the arid hills and plains for property developments and swaths of forest. In the coming days, a bill will be introduced in the Israeli parliament which proposes the resettlement of up to 40,000 inhabitants of dozens of "unrecognised" Bedouin villages in the Negev to specially designated townships. On Sunday the cabinet agreed to allow work to begin on 10 new Jewish settlements in the area "to attract a new population to the Negev".

Tags: Land rights

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IWGIA - International Work Group for Indigenous Affairs - is a global human rights organisation dedicated to promoting, protecting and defending indigenous peoples’ rights. Read more.

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