Virtual Field Visits

Al-HaqAl-Haq, an independent NGO based in Ramallah and the West Bank affiliate of the International Commission of Jurists, has provided a remarkable portfolio of Virtual Field Visits to occupied Palestine.  They explain the project like this:

The overall purpose of the project is to improve Al Haq’s ability to communicate the geographic context, location and extent of the human rights violations that take place in the occupied Palestinian territory.

In order to do this we have developed a mapping and presentational tool that incorporates our own visual documentation with Google’s satellite imagery and utilises Google Earth’s 3D interface to present a clear and accurate picture of the situation on the ground.

You can read more about the project here. I’ve embedded the latest Virtual Field Visit below, which Al-Haq explains like this:

The “E1” Virtual Field Visit is the latest in a series of virtual field visits produced by Al-Haq. Designed to bring the field to people who are unable to visit the Occupied Palestinian Territory (OPT), the virtual field visits use maps to illustrate the obstacles and human rights abuses faced by Palestinians on a daily basis.

On 29 November 2012 the United Nations (UN) voted to upgrade the status of Palestine to non-member observer State. Shortly afterwards, Israel, who had vociferously objected to the upgrade, announced the construction of an additional 3,000 units for settlers in the West Bank. This included construction in what is known as the “E1” area, which refers to a twelve square kilometre plot of land located in the West Bank, to the east of the Jerusalem municipal boundary and bordering the Ma’ale Adumim settlement. The close proximity of the E1 area to Ma’ale Adumim settlement allows for significant expansion of what is already the third most popular settlement in the OPT. 

The E1 area stretches across 22,000 dunums of confiscated Palestinian land and also provides a vital passage joining the northern and southern sections of the West Bank, as well as Jerusalem. The closure of this passage would effectively cut the West Bank into two. Construction in the E1 area, combined with restrictions imposed by the Annexation Wall and the Oslo Accords, creates a clear obstacle to a self-sufficient economically viable Palestinian State.

You can find the rest, including one on the Wall, together with maps and other multimedia materials, here.  If you have problems, all the videos are also available on YouTube and Vimeo.