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Published on Aug 27, 2009
In August, 2009, AIC visited the Tent of Nations, a farm situated in the middle of 4 Jewish settlements in Palestine, just southwest of Bethlehem, neighbouring the village of Nahalin.
Now in its fourth generation, the farm which harvests olive trees, grapes and other products, is under constant threat of occupation. Daoud Nassar, third generation farmer and owner of the land, along with his family, has withstood settler attacks and Israeli military lawsuits disputing his ownership.
Nassar and his family, with the the support of international volunteers and organizations, are maintaining the farm, hosting youth camps and professional workshops for women.
Vision: The Tent of Nations is a fulfilled dream of Bishara Nassar the Palestinian Christian who lived all his life in Bethlehem city and on the land itself. Bishara devoted his life to protecting his land. He ordained his family's land for network projects, which included a youth activity hall. Bishara died in 1976. However, his family carried on with the work to uphold the vision.
In the year 2000, friends joined the Nassar's vision and Together they found the Tent of Nations, remarking that a portion of the land was dedicated to the Tent of Nations by the Nassar family.
Today, the Tent of Nations is housed under the Bethlehem Bible College umbrella with support from Friends of Tent of Nations.
Land History: Daher Nassar (Bishara's father) purchased this land in 1924. Since that time, many family members have worked the land by day, and slept in caves by night. The land has produced olives, grapes, and wheatetc.
In 1991, the Israeli government declared the whole area including the Nassars portion to be an Israeli state property.
The Nassar family has all the original land papers and contributed plenty of work to the land from the time of Ottoman, British, Jordanian, and Israeli governance, which shows that the Israeli government has no right to declare it because obviously the land belongs to the family since 1924 the date of purchase.
The Nassar family challenged Israel's declaration and therefore the case was brought to the court.