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The Bedouins of the Negev Desert, Looking Back Through the Years

  • Cecily Hilleary
Roughly 200,000 Bedouins live in the Negev Desert of Israel, all of them citizens and most of them concentrated in an area around the city of Beersheva. Granted Israeli citizenship in the 1950's, they lived under military rule until the 1960's and have since resisted government attempts to move them into seven larger, recognized towns. Thousands of Bedouin still live in dozens of unrecognized settlements across the northern Negev. If the Prawer-Begin law is passed by Israel's Knesset, as many as 40,000 Bedouins will be forcibly removed from their homes. A look back at the Bedouin presence in the Negev in photographs, 1900 to the present.
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A protester holds a placard as another holds an Islamic movement flag during a demonstration to show their solidarity with Bedouin citizens, near the Bedouin townof Rahat in southern Israel August 1, 2013.
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A protester holds a placard as another holds an Islamic movement flag during a demonstration to show their solidarity with Bedouin citizens, near the Bedouin townof Rahat in southern Israel August 1, 2013.

Palestinian protesters run as Israeli border policemen fire a stun grenade duringa demonstration to show solidarity with Bedouin citizens, near the West Bank village of Hizma, south-east of Ramallah August 1, 2013.
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Palestinian protesters run as Israeli border policemen fire a stun grenade duringa demonstration to show solidarity with Bedouin citizens, near the West Bank village of Hizma, south-east of Ramallah August 1, 2013.

Israeli riot police fire tear gas at Israeli Arab and Palestinians activists during a protest against the Prawer Plan plan to resettle Israel’s Bedouin minority from their villages in the Negev Desert, in the village of Arara.
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Israeli riot police fire tear gas at Israeli Arab and Palestinians activists during a protest against the Prawer Plan plan to resettle Israel’s Bedouin minority from their villages in the Negev Desert, in the village of Arara.

In this Wednesday, July 31, 2013 photo, a Bedouin walks through the Negev desert near the village of al-Sira, Israel. 
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In this Wednesday, July 31, 2013 photo, a Bedouin walks through the Negev desert near the village of al-Sira, Israel. 

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