Israeli Settlers Storm Ottoman-Era Site Near Nablus-district Village


Scores of Israeli Jewish settlers early Friday stormed an Ottoman-era site on the outskirts of Burqa village, North of Nablus, said a local activist.

Ghassan Daghlas, who monitors settlement construction in the Northern West Bank, said that under Israeli force’ protection, buses packed with about 150 settlers stormed the al-Masudiyya site, WAFA reported. 

Located between the towns of Burqa and Sebastia, al-Masudiyya dates back to 1914. During the Ottoman era, a main station for the Hejaz railway was built at the site to connect the main cities of Palestine with the Hejaz region in Saudi Arabia in order to facilitate the travel of Muslim pilgrims to Mecca.

According to Burqa Village Council, the al-Masoud family donated a 38-dunum plot of land in 1914 to the Hejaz Company for the construction of the railway station in the area.

Following the Israeli occupation of the West Bank in June 1967, the Israeli military reportedly turned the area into barracks for five years, during which they tampered with the features of the area and dismantled the railway.

Israeli military have obstructed Burqa Village Council’s attempts to restore the area, issuing demolition orders for donor-funded al-Masudiyya Park, which consists of a children’s playground, a health unit and a small cafeteria.

Settlers repeatedly attack Palestinians and storm their historical religious and archaeological sites in an attempt to acquire and claim the sites as Israeli and obliterate Palestinian history and culture.