How these Bedouin in Israel are working to save their village, Almonitor, 23 December 2016
The JNF has repeatedly denied involvement in the decision-making process of what Israeli authorities demolish and stressed the widespread benefit of their environmental work. But activists counter that the JNF does in practice have a significant say within the Israel Land Council and argue that some forestation projects have clearly contentious political implications.
“To say that they [the JNF] are just a small partner is not the right answer,” said Haya Noach, the director of the Negev Coexistence Forum. “You [the JNF] have a responsibility, and ignoring people’s rights has a toll.”
Israel strands Bedouin in their own village, +972 Magazine, 14 December 2016
The Negev Coexistence Forum responded: “The state, whether intentionally or thoughtlessly, repeatedly prevents the Bedouin population from accessing the public transport services that are the right of every citizen.
“Public transport is not just a basic right, it is also a practical way to make places of work and study accessible to village residents, most of whom do not have a private vehicle as an alternative means [of transport]. It is unlikely that such a scenario would occur in a Jewish town, and in this instance, the discrimination is also endangering the lives of Umm Batin’s residents.”
Be’er Sheva Doves Defy Mayor to Hold Draft-dodging Event, Haaretz, 19 October 2016
A conference featuring speakers who support refusing to serve in the army is scheduled to be held in Be’er Sheva on Thursday despite the mayor’s efforts to cancel it.
The Negev Coexistence Forum, one of the organizers, wrote Mayor Ruvik Danilovich on Tuesday it had no intention of acceding to his request to call off the event but invited him to come and present his views.
The forum also took issue with the mayor for publishing his letter in the media rather than discussing it with the group privately. It also accused him of consistently refusing to attend an annual Iftar dinner for the city’s Muslim residents.
“If you were familiar with our work, we might not have arrived at the current conflict,” the letter said.
‘They want to uproot me and bring a Jewish citizen’, Al-Jazeera, 17 August 2016
Haia Noach, chief executive of the Israeli human rights group Negev Coexistence Forum for Civil Equality, told Al Jazeera that the court last year recommended that the KKL-JNF refrain from planting any additional trees on the contested land until a final decision was reached.
Israel poised to raze Bedouin village so Jews can take land, Electronic Intifadah, 8 August 2016
A video from the day, published by the Negev Coexistence Forum for Civil Equality, a group that opposes Israel’s policies in the Naqab, shows police throwing people to the ground, punching a child before violently detaining him, and wrestling men to the ground.
Michal Rotem, of the Negev Coexistence Forum, a Negev-based group working for Bedouin rights, said the numbers make it clear that the village will not be rural in the state’s proposed location.
“It will be like a town … For sure, there will not be a place for people to cultivate or have their herds,” Rotem told Al Jazeera, noting that the state’s aim is to concentrate the people of Wadi al-Naam on the smallest amount of land possible.
“At the end [of the day], it will be, I guess, exactly what the state wanted in the first place: just concentrating the village on [a smaller] amount of land and making it an urban settlement within a couple of years,” she said.
“We want to stay”, The Electronic Intifada, 5 July 2016
Ahlam Khalil films in Atir; her footage is collected by the Negev Coexistence Forum for Civil Equality, which uses it for advocacy purposes. “We are able to get pictures of demolitions and police brutality or police coming into village on a daily basis, and we use this material in reports and we deliver it to the media. It’s a powerful tool when it’s coming from the community itself,” Haia Noach, director of the group, said.
Israel destroys Palestinian village for 100th time, Al-Jazeera, 3 July 2016
Haia Noach, chief executive of the Israeli human rights NGO Negev Coexistence Forum for Civil Equality, told Al Jazeera that these planned urban spaces were dense, crowded and offered an alien way of life to the rural Bedouin population.
“It is a great concern that the state is only offering the Bedouin one way of living in suburbs or urban spaces, but not in rural spaces,” she said. “The state wants to concentrate the Bedouin population in small and dense urban spaces and give privileges to the Jewish community, which can live in whatever kind of village or urban place they want to live.”
Demolitions as displacement: Israel targets Negev’s Bedouin Palestinians, Middle East Monitor, 23 June 2016
The drive to displace Bedouin Palestinians is taking place at the same time as – in the words of NCF executive director Haia Noach – the government is “approving more and more Jewish settlements” in the Negev. Thus while Palestinian citizens face “eviction and demolition orders”, the state’s “funds for development in the Negev” are “mainly for the Jewish population.”
Though NCF urges the Israeli government to “stop preferring one population over another”, there is no sign that these discriminatory and apartheid policies, whether in the Negev or West Bank, are likely to end any time soon. If anything, as this report shows, they are intensifying.
Israeli development plans slated to displace Bedouins from ‘unrecognized’ Negev desert villages, Free Speech Radio News, 8 June 2016
Haia Noach, director of the Arab-Jewish human rights NGO Negev Coexistence Forum, does not accept the state’s explanation that providing infrastructure to unrecognized Bedouin villages is too costly.
“The government just decided about five new Jewish villages, two of them on top of Bedouin villages. So the problem is not too much infrastructure or budget, because those budgets are available,” Noach points out. “And more than this, they don’t have to found the villages, the villages are there, people are living there. The government just does not want Arabs to live in small rural villages, which seem to be a privilege of the Jewish community in Israel.”
Nearly 1,000 Bedouin structures demolished in past year, +972 Magazine, 7 June 2016
Israel demolished 1,041 Bedouin structures in the Negev between 2013 and 2015, with a further 1,711 structures being destroyed by their owners after receiving demolition orders, according to a new report by the Negev Coexistence Forum for Civil Equality (NCF). In 2015 alone, nearly 1,000 structures were demolished in the Negev — 365 by the Israeli authorities, and 617 by the homeowners themselves.
NGO decries over 900 Beduin building demolitions, The Jerusalem Post, 7 June 2016
“The State of Israel continues to ignore the serious housing crisis of the Beduin community,” said Haia Noach, CEO of the Negev Coexistence Forum.
“Instead of acting for the benefit of all residents of the Negev, the government is engaged in deepening gaps between different communities and planning new settlements for Jews and the expulsion of the Beduin community into crowded urban areas,” she said.
“Israel should cease the policy of demolishing houses and create a new and equal policy of recognition of Beduin communities and their development, which will lead to the flourishing of the Negev as a whole,” she added.
Israelis donate NIS 70,000 to Arab man beaten by cops, The Times of Israel, 25 May 2016
The Israeli human rights group Negev Coexistence Forum launched the fundraising drive on Headstart.co.il Monday with the initial goal of NIS 40,000 ($10,000), but as of early Thursday afternoon, donations pledged on the site was just shy of NIS 70,000.
One of the drive organizers, Michal Rotem, said the Forum members were pleasantly surprised by outpouring of support for Alqian.
“It really took us all by surprise. We were hesitant at first, but then the numbers just kept going up,” she told the Ynet news website on Tuesday.
“After we met Maysam we learned just how hard he’s worked to save money for his degree. There were many others who were looking for a way to support him, so we came up with the idea of supporting his education,” Rotem said.
$18K Raised for Israeli Arab Beaten by Police, Forward, 25 May 2016
An organization advocating Jewish-Arab coexistence has raised more than $18,500 in a crowdfunding drive for a Bedouin Israeli who was beaten by off-duty police officers.
The Negev Coexistence Forum for Civil Equality began the drive after Maisam Abu Alqian, 19, a Bedouin student from southern Israel, was beaten outside a Tel Aviv Burger King, where he worked, by plainclothes border policemen.
As of Wednesday afternoon, the fundraising page of the Coexistence Forum had raised nearly double its goal of roughly $10,000 to pay for Abu Alqian’s legal fees. $20,000, according to the page, would cover all of the costs involved and help him pay for his studies.
Israelis’ heartwarming response to shocking police brutality, +972 Magazine, 25 May 2016
Tuesday morning, the Negev Coexistence Forum launched a crowdfunding campaign for Abu Alqian. The goal was to raise NIS 40,000 (just over $10,000) to fund his psychology studies. That bar was met within less than 12 hours, as hundreds of Israelis donated to support Abu Alqian.
Overwhelmed by the success, the NCF decided to try and double the goal, in order to raise some funds to cover Abu Alqian’s legal defense costs. By the time of writing, over 200 percent of the original goal’s sum had already been raised.
Forced Closure of Bedouin Settlements, Inter Press Service, 22 April 2016
The Arab-Jewish NGO Negev Coexistence Forum (NCF), another local group working to advance Bedouin rights, is behind the visual documentation project which is actively involving children and women in the defence of their village by using cameras. The photos are collected by NCF from all participating villages at risk of demolition and used for advocacy at local and international level.
Bedouin Villagers Slated for Evacuation Take Their Struggle to the Streets, Haaretz, 3 March 2016
There are also tours conducted for representatives of foreign embassies by the Negev Coexistence Forum for Civil Equality, in order to convince them to pressure the Israeli government not to carry out the evictions. On Tuesday a representative from the Canadian Embassy came to visit the village.
MK Odeh: We’re united with unrecognized Beduin villages, The Jerusalem Post, 3 March 2016
The protest was backed by various NGOs including Rabbis for Human Rights, Amnesty International, Shatil: The New Israel Fund Initiative for Social Change and the Negev Coexistence Forum.
Haia Noach, CEO of the Negev Coexistence Forum, said the decision to destroy the Beduin villages is “a racist decision that will deepen the rift between the communities in the Negev.”
PHOTOS: Arabs and Jews protest planned expulsion of 1,200 Bedouin, +972 Magazine, 6 March 2016
Haya Noah, Director of the Negev Coexistence Forum for Civil Equality, condemned the decision as “racist,” claiming that it will “deepen the rift between the communities in the Negev and harm all its residents. The Negev has enough room for everyone — Jews and Arabs.”
Israeli authorities demolish mosque in unrecognized Bedouin village, +972 Magazine, 6 January 2016
Israeli Police officers accompanied by bulldozers destroyed a mosque Wednesday morning in the unrecognized Bedouin village of Rakhamah in the Negev Desert.