Matthew Vickery reports from Israeli farms in the northern Negev and occupied Jordan Valley where Thai workers and Palestinian children work long hours, in often dangerous and hazardous situations, all for less than the legal Israeli minimum wage. “This is not what I expected,” Dusit Doting says as he stands with other Thai workers outside the white shipping container they now call home.
Matthew Vickey reports from the West Bank village of Duma where 15-year-old Baraa Dawabsha tells him, “We don’t feel protected at all. The settlers have tried more than once to get into the village again after the attack. They even gathered near to here and Nablus, and were chanting in Hebrew, Arabic, and English, screaming at people ‘Dawabsha number two,’ threatening they will do it again.”
The brutal killing of Habtom Zarhum in October has sowed seeds of fear in the African asylum seeker and refugee community in Israel. With the recent escalation in violence in Israel and the occupied Palestinian territories individuals now fear, more than ever, that they will become the target of an increasingly angry and militarized Israeli society.
Up and down the Gaza Strip thousands of families are experiencing winter in freezing conditions, some living in makeshift homes and others in what remains of their homes after Israel’s deadly assault on the besieged Strip. Reconstruction efforts from last year’s war remain stalled despite promises made by Arab nations such as Qatar, United Arab Emirates and others to provide funds. Suad Najar, mother to eight children, says, “I have no idea how long I have to live like this. I can’t see an end right now.”
Hebron is an epicenter of resistance: Around a third of the 70 Palestinian deaths in October came from Hebron and the surrounding area. The city itself, which has always had a heavy Israeli army presence, is now seeing increased soldier numbers.