***image1***‘Abbas Khaled ‘Ali Yusef is a tradesman from Baqa ash Sharqiya who has lost two shops since the construction of the Wall began and the targeting of the commercial areas along the Green Line. His first shop, a seed and nut toaster for wholesale and retail food provision, was located five meters from the Israeli military checkpoint separating Baqa ash Sharqiya and Nazlat ‘Isa; both villages will be isolated between the Wall and the 1967 Green Line. On the night of November 3rd, 2001 ‘Abbas’s shop, located in Nazlat ‘Isa’s commercial area and in plain view of the checkpoint, along with eight others, was burned to the ground. This caused ‘Abbas to suffer a huge financial loss, 450,000 Israeli shekels, while nothing was revealed from the Israeli “investigation” of the incident.

After the burning of the first shop, ‘Abbas and his brothers rebuilt the shop and worked long hours and through all the holidays to try to compensate for the losses. Only months later, the military closed off the area with barbed wire and then demolished the shop. Again, ‘Abbas lost his shop, goods and clientele. ‘Abbas moved to a different location within the commercial area and opened a third shop, which has recently received a demolition order, like the rest of what remains of the Nazlat ‘Isa commercial area. In February 2003, 63 shops in Nazlat ‘Isa’s commercial area were razed to the ground. ‘Abbas is among the remaining 165 shops that are to be demolished.*

***image4***‘Abbas and his family are refugees from Sindiyana near Haifa and a family of traders without land. ‘Abbas states that the reality for many Palestinians who have experienced Israeli policies to relocate is that, “Every person has to go after his income.” ‘Abbas hopes to establish another business in Tulkarm where he and his brothers can continue to support their families.

*This story was written in June 2003. Since then, the shop of ‘Abbas Yusef, along with the remaining shops of the Nazlat ‘Isa commercial market, were demolished. To read more about the demolition of Nazlat ‘Isa, see the Wall News section.

This personal story is taken from the PENGON publication The Wall in Palestine: Facts, Testimonies, Analysis and Call to Action written in June 2003.


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