Campaign Farmers' Stories

Stories from the Olive Tree Campaign fields and beneficiary farmers

Farmer story – Mohammad Abdeh – Al-Khader

Category: Campaign Farmers' Stories
Created: 01 August 2013

Muhamad Abdeh farmerMohammad Abdeh (50 years) owns a plot of 120 dunums of land in an area called Khelat Afanah-Al Shafah. It is situated between the cities of Bethlehem and Hebron and is surrounded by three prominent settlements (Efrat, Migdal Oz and Etzzion). Mohammad says: "when my father left me this land, it was rocky and unsuitable for cultivation but my brothers and I worked it every day for many years until it became a paradise. My relationship with my land is the most important thing in this life." Mohammad's lands contain more than 20 different kinds of trees. Mohammad says: "there is not even one tree on this land that I did not plant, I have knelt down for each tree on this land since I was young, I have devoted my life to this land, it is a source of livelihood for me and for my children".

The Israeli settlers have harassed and attacked Mohammad in an attempt to force him off his land. On one occasion they released the wastewater from the Efrat settlement onto his land damaging the soil and resulting in the death of many of his trees. In 1994 Israeli authorities tried to buy the land from Mohammad offering him a large amount of money, but he refused. Their next offer was to exchange his land for a larger plot of land somewhere else, but this he also refused. The Olive Tree Campaign has planted more than 850 olive trees on Mohammad’s land to support his struggle, to protect his land and Keep Hope Alive.