Qalqilya in Palestine

Monday, 14 March 2022 - 11:00 am (CET/MEZ) Berlin | Author/Destination:
Category/Kategorie: General, Union for the Mediterranean
Reading Time:  5 minutes

Qalqilya from Hod HaSharon © iiiii/cc-by-sa-4.0

Qalqilya from Hod HaSharon © iiiii/cc-by-sa-4.0

Qalqilya or Qalqiliya is a Palestinian city in the West Bank which serves as the administrative center of the Qalqilya Governorate. In the 2007 census the city had a population of 41,739. Qalqilya is surrounded by the Israeli West Bank barrier with a narrow gap in the east controlled by the Israeli military and a tunnel to Hableh. Oranges are grown there.

Qalqilya is located in the northwestern West Bank, straddling the border with Israel. It is 16 kilometers southwest of the Palestinian city of Tulkarm, and the nearest localities are the Arab-Israeli city of Tira and the Palestinian hamlet of ‘Arab al-Ramadin al-Shamali to the northeast, the Palestinian village of Nabi Ilyas to the east, the Palestinian hamlets ‘Arab Abu Farda and ‘Arab ar-Ramadin al-Janubi and the Israeli settlement of Alfei Menashe to the southwest, and the Palestinian village Habla and Arab-Israeli town of Jaljuliya to the south. Qalqilya has an average elevation of 57 meters above sea level. The average annual rainfall 587.4 millimeters and the average annual temperature is 19 degrees Celsius.

© iiiii/cc-by-sa-4.0 Martyr's monument © Soman/cc-by-sa-2.5 Qalqilya from Hod HaSharon © iiiii/cc-by-sa-4.0 Qalqilya mosques © flickr.com - DYKT Mohigan/cc-by-2.0 Qalqilyah-Idobi-cc-by-sa-3.0
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Qalqilya mosques © flickr.com - DYKT Mohigan/cc-by-2.0
Between 1967 and 1995 almost 80 percent of Qalqilya’s labor force worked for Israeli companies or industries in the construction and agriculture sectors. The remaining 20% engaged in trade and commerce, marketing across the Green Line. According to a field survey taken by the Applied Research Institute-Jerusalem (ARIJ), 45% of Qalqilya’s working population was employed by government, 25% worked in agriculture, 15% worked in trade and commerce, 10% worked in industry and 5% worked in Israeli labor. In 2012, the unemployment rate was 22%, with those most affected formerly employed in agriculture, trade and services. Qalqilya is particularly known for its citrus crop and of its total of 10,252 dunams of land, (of which 5,930 are arable) 1802 dunams (about 17.6% of the city’s land and over 30% of its arable land) are planted with citrus trees. Other major crops are olives and vegetables. Local industries include the manufacture of foodstuffs, olive oil, dairy products, soap, glass, stone, marble and building materials, in addition to the manufacture of wood, and mineral water companies. The Qalqilya Zoo, established in 1986, is the largest zoo in the West Bank and according to its owner, is the city’s single-largest employer. It serves as one of Qalqilya’s main attractions. The zoo houses 170 animals and works closely with zoologists from the Jerusalem Biblical Zoo and the Ramat Gan Safari. The only factory for prosthetic limbs in the northern West Bank is in Qalqilya.

Of the city’s total area of 10,252 dunams, 3,027 were built-up areas, 266 were used for industrial purposes, 2,894 were planted with permanent crops, 419 were used for greenhouses, 274 for livestock ranges, 2,343 others were classified as arable, and 283 dunams were occupied by the West Bank barrier. Nearly all of Qalqilya’s urban area is under Palestinian civil jurisdiction and Israeli military control (Area B), while 64.7% of the city’s municipal territory, mostly agricultural lands and open spaces, is under Israeli civil and military control (Area C). Israel’s construction of the barrier began in 2002 and isolates Qalqilya from the north, west, south, and half of its eastern side, leaving a corridor in the east connecting it with smaller Palestinian villages and hamlets. Israel states its construction of the wall is for security purposes, particularly to prevent infiltration by Palestinian militants into Israel as had occurred during the Second Intifada. The Palestinians state that the barrier is meant to annex Palestinian lands (since the wall often juts deep into Palestinian territory) and control the movement of Palestinians. The barrier has negatively affected Qalqilya’s economy, particularly the commercial and trade sectors, because it has separated the city from nearby Palestinian localities and bordering Arab towns in Israel, which contributed about 40% of the city’s income prior to the barrier’s completion. The barrier has also separated 1,836 dunams of mostly agricultural lands and open spaces within Qalqilya’s jurisdiction from the city proper. Social relations between Qalqilya’s inhabitants and those of other Palestinian cities have also been hindered by the barrier.

Read more on Qalqilia and Wikipedia Qalqilya (Smart Traveler App by U.S. Department of State - Weather report by weather.com - Global Passport Power Rank - Travel Risk Map - Democracy Index - GDP according to IMF, UN, and World Bank - Global Competitiveness Report - Corruption Perceptions Index - Press Freedom Index - World Justice Project - Rule of Law Index - UN Human Development Index - Global Peace Index - Travel & Tourism Competitiveness Index). Photos by Wikimedia Commons. If you have a suggestion, critique, review or comment to this blog entry, we are looking forward to receive your e-mail at comment@wingsch.net. Please name the headline of the blog post to which your e-mail refers to in the subject line.




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