Grief and Resilience in the Negev: Bedouin-Jewish Emergency ...

Grief and Resilience in the Negev: Bedouin-Jewish Emergency Responses

December 7, 2023

Thumbnail: November 28 Zoom Call featuring Shira Ohana, CEO of Hura Municipality and Att. Hanan Alsanah, Director of the Bedouin Women’s Rights Center at Itach Ma’aki (Women Lawyers for Social Justice).

Bedouin and Jewish communities in the Negev were profoundly impacted by October 7 and its aftermath. As one-third of region’s population, Bedouin citizens lost lives, were taken hostage, and made heroic rescues. Negev Bedouin are also among the most under-equipped for such emergencies, lacking adequate shelters, information, and resources. Jewish and Arab volunteers in the Negev quickly mobilized to respond to emergency needs, express solidarity, and reduce Jewish-Arab tensions. While these inspiring efforts display the resilience of Negev, difficult days remain: Bedouin communities still face crisis-level conditions and relations among Jewish and Bedouin neighbors continue to be fragile.

On November 28, 2023 IATF was hosted a conversation with Shira Ohana, CEO of Hura Municipality and Att. Hanan Alsanah, Director of the Bedouin Women’s Rights Center at Itach Ma’aki (Women Lawyers for Social Justice) about the joint emergency response from the earliest days of the war, and what they are doing today to preserve a shared future for all residents of the Negev. We also heard from Layla Altalalka, whose son Samer is a hostage in Gaza.

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