To: Secretary of State Blinken or other State Department Officials with whom the Representative/Senator has had Contact
Regarding: May 15 Hearing of the Israeli Civil Administration for the Re-registration of the Nassar Family Farm in the West Bank
Dear Secretary Blinken:
I am writing/calling regarding the re-registration of the 100 acre Nassar family farm, also known as Tent of Nations, located in Area C of the West Bank . I understand that you are well-informed about this case, and thus I will not take time to share the history and details of their 30-year legal struggle to maintain ownership of their land. I have heard from numerous constituents regarding this case, and in particular about the continuous delays by the Re-registration Committee to take up the case and come to a decision which affirms the legal title of the Nassar family to the land which they have owned since 1916 and which was registered with the British in 1924.
I think this case is at a critical juncture, given the current Israeli government’s plans for “judicial reform” which will likely prevent Palestinians in the West Bank from appealing their case to the Israeli Supreme Court. Thus, it is even more urgent that the re-registration of the Nassars’ land be completed.
The documents the family possesses establish the legal legitimacy of their ownership, and the 2007 decision by Israel’s Supreme Court directed the Civil Administration to begin the re-registration process which is required by Israeli law of those Palestinians owning land in Area C. While the family has farmed the land continuously, and has met multiple requests from the Civil Administration for documents, the Re-registration Committee continues to place more and more conditions on the family in order to complicate the case and avoid making a decision.
The farm’s location on a hill, surrounded by five illegal Israeli settlements, makes it particularly vulnerable to the creeping annexation underway in much of Area C. The annexation of Palestinian land and settlement spread is contrary to U.S. policy and is an impediment to a just solution.
Finally, I would like to suggest that this case is about more than a single family farm. Tent of Nations is well known internationally. They welcome pilgrimage groups, and other visitors and volunteers to the farm which is a demonstration of sustainable farming practices in an area where no running water or electricity is provided by the Israeli government. Their welcoming and transformative approach to the many obstacles placed in their way by Israeli authorities leads many visitors to see Tent of Nations as a beacon of hope in the midst of the ever more challenging situation in Israel/Palestine.
I am asking you to continue to pressure the Israeli authorities to see that the May 15 hearing is held, and that a final decision is made to re-register the Nassars’ land.
Thank you for your attention to my request. I look forward to hearing from you.
Signature of Senator/Representative