Despite being been stuck living between COVID-19 and the Israeli occupation, Palestinians have come up with unique and creative solutions to the problems that they’ve faced because of the coronavirus. In this final episode of our COVID-19 series in Palestine, we’re showcasing Palestinians who responded to the coronavirus pandemic using innovation and creativity as a way to help their communities adapt to the crisis around them.
Like the rest of the world, Palestine has been hit hard with the coronavirus. The city of Bethlehem in particular has perhaps been impacted the most by the pandemic. At any given time of year the streets of Bethlehem’s Old City are filled with tourists from all over the world, but now shops have been closed and the streets are empty. According to local experts, short-term losses as a result of COVID-19 have reached up to 500 million dollars in Bethlehem alone, and people here are wondering if life will ever return back to normal.
As part of COVID-19 series in Palestine, Yumna Patel traveled to the Jordan Valley to see what life is like for Palestinians there as they fight two battles: one against the coronavirus, and one against annexation. “In this area, the occupation is even worse for us than the coronavirus pandemic. The occupation has taken advantage of the coronavirus pandemic to take over more land in the Jordan Valley,” Motaz Bisharat, a Palestinian activist based in the northern Jordan Valley tells Mondoweiss.
Imagine being left to fend for yourself against the coronavirus, as your home is threatened by demolition, and your family is living under military occupation. That is the reality for Palestinians living in the village of al-Walaja. Watch the second episode in a five-part Mondoweiss series on how Palestinians are surviving under both a global pandemic, and the Israeli occupation.
What would you do if you were living in a refugee camp during a global pandemic? For the first time in months, Palestinian refugee camps are seeing a spike in COVID-19 cases raising concerns over the potentially devastating effects the virus can have on disadvantaged communities like the Dheisheh refugee camp.