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Indybay Feature
Sat Dec 24 2022 (Updated 12/27/22)
Unholy Days and Nights in Bethlehem
The “Little Town of Bethlehem” Is Far Different from What Many Imagine
On December 25, Bethlehem commemorates the birth of Jesus Christ. It is a holy time of year for residents and visitors. Many people around the world picture a sleepy, picturesque town surrounded by hills, dotted with sheep, but the reality in the city of Bethlehem is much different. It is a historic and troubled town. Since the municipal Christmas tree was lit on December 3, Israeli forces and settlers have committed a number of human rights abuses in the area, which is actually normal for any time of the year.

On December 6, Israeli soldiers invaded the Palestinian town of Nahalin near Bethlehem with bulldozers. They demolished agricultural structures belonging to a local farmer. On December 9, Israeli soldiers invaded the town of Al-Khader and suppressed protests with rubber-coated steel bullets, tear gas, and concussion grenades. A number of Palestinians were injured. At dawn on December 13, Israeli soldiers ransacked many Palestinian homes in the town of Beit Fajjar and the Deheishe refugee camp located inside Bethlehem. They abducted six Palestinians. On December 14, Israeli soldiers invaded the village of Husan. They demolished an agricultural structure built by a local Palestinian farmer on his own private land. On December 15, settlers from the illegal Israeli settlement of Efrat assaulted a 70-year-old Palestinian man in the village of Arta.

These are just some of the tragic — and unnecessary — events in and around Bethlehem in recent days.

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Related Features: Israelis Steal Land for New Settlement in Bethlehem While Gazan Christians Denied Access (2018) | Israeli Forces Violently Subdue Holiday Santa Claus March (2016) | Christian Palestinian Reflects on Life Under Israeli Occupation and Maintains Hope (2013) | Tea and Tear Gas in Occupied Palestine (2011)

See Also: Chile President Boric Says Chile Will Open Embassy in Occupied Palestine
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