The Bedouin Village of El Araqib predates the birth of the State of Israel in 1948. Israel does not recognize El Araqib, along with forty other villages throughout the Negev, and has taken an aggressive stand toward these communities.
Property demolitions are being used by the state in an attempt to relocate the Bedouin and claim their land in the Negev to fulfill the government’s plans of beatifying and resettling the region. The Jewish National Fund, which leases land in the Negev from the state is heavily foresting the region.
The JNF receives funding from an American evangelical Christian group, G-d TV, which are sponsoring the forestation currently encroaching on the pastoral lands of El Arakib.
The State has destroyed the village of El Araqib nine times in just the past eight months. The homes of over thirty families have been leveled over and over again, in a bid to systematically depopulate this undocumented village in the Negev.
To commemorate the Roman New Year of 2011, a group of activists from the Negev Coexistence Forum gathered with the children of El Araqib to decorate three dead olive trees for Christmas, olive trees that were uprooted by the state in the demolition.