Friday, 20 July 2007

Sana'a,Baraa' , Zenub, Ola and Amber are from Al-Malha

Most of the women in the group in Adyah camp are from Al-Malha. Sana'a is Bara'a's aunt in the same family, Zenub is the niece of Bara'a and Ola and Aber are cousins with everyone. The families all were depopulated at the same time to Adyah Camp and have never left since. It has been since 1948 that they have not seen their old homes to which they still hold the keys, from the Ottoman time period.

Below is a history of the village Al-Malha.

Al-Malha (al-Maliha)

Al-Maliha is in the Jerusalem District 5.5 kms Northeast of Jerusalem. In 1931 the population was 1,410 (including Ayn Yahu) and in 1944/45 it was 1,940. Land usage in 1944/45 was 5,798 Arab, 922 Jewish and 108 for the public. In 1931 there was 299 homes.

Road connected to neighboring villages and in 1596 the population was 296 who paid taxes on wheat, barley, olive and fruit trees, goats and beehives. The houses were built of stone.

On 6 March 1948, the village was first attacked from a Jewish unit that infiltrated the outskirts and clased with the village’s defenders. The village was evacuated in two waves, in April as a result of the massacre in nearby Day Yasin on 9 April. The second wave occurred in mid-July, after the first truce of the war. The Haganah approached the village on 1-2 May at night. The village was occupied about 10 weeks later in conjuction with operation Dani (al-Ramla District). A fierce battle lasted for several days and on 13-14 July a company from the Irgun Zvai Leumi (IZL) and two platoons from the Yonathan Company of the Gadna entered the village. The Arabs counter attacked on 15 July that forced the IZL to withdraw. Later the IZL gathered reinforcements and on 16 July, but the Arabs counterattacked which left Irgun men killed and others wounded. The Haganah withdrew from the assault. A few days later on 22 July, David Shaltiel, the Israeli commander told the Times that the village and Ayn Karim has been occupied.

An Israeli settlement Manachat was established in 1949 which later became part of the Israeli West Jerusalem. Many houses are still occupied by Jewish families in 1986, and a few homes from the south of the village has been destroyed. Some of the homes were still standing but abandoned (in 1986).

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