Al-Khisas, Gaza

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al-Khisas
Arabic خربة الخِصاص
Name meaning the ruin of booths or reed huts[1]
Also spelled Khirbat Khisâs
Subdistrict Gaza
Palestine grid 108/117
Population 150[2][3] (1945)
Area 6,269[3] dunams
Date of depopulation November 4–5, 1948[4]
Cause(s) of depopulation Military assault by Yishuv forces
Current localities Ashkelon[5]

Al-Khisas (Arabic: خربة الخِصاص‎‎, Khirbat Khisâs) was a Palestinian Arab village located 18.5 kilometers (11.5 mi) northeast of Gaza near the modern city of Ashkelon.[6]

Location[edit]

Al-Khisas was located just west of Ni'ilya, south of Al-Jura.

History[edit]

In 1838, in the late Ottoman era, el Khusas was noted as a place "in ruins or deserted."[7]

An official Ottoman village list from about 1870 showed that Chasas had 6 houses and a population of 35, though the population count included men, only.[8][9]

In 1883, the Palestine Exploration Fund's Survey of Western Palestine found at Khurbet el Khesas "a few heaps of stones with a well near."[10]

British Mandate era[edit]

The modern village was classified as a hamlet in the Palestine Index Gazetter, and was built after World War I.[5] Farmers from neighboring areas first built temporary huts at the site to shelter themselves during the harvest, gradually they settled and built adobe houses.[5] The population relied on neighboring villages Al-Jura and Ni'ilya for medical, educational and administrative services.[5]

In the 1922 census of Palestine, conducted by the British Mandate authorities, Khesas had a population of 102 inhabitants, all Muslims,[11] increasing in the 1931 census to 133, still all Muslims, in 26 houses.[12]

In 1945, Al-Khisas had a population of 150 Muslims[2] with a total of 6,269 dunams of land, according to an official land and population survey.[13] Of this, 191 dunums of village land were used for citrus and bananas, 419 for cereal farming, 2,671 irrigated or used for orchards,[14] while 10 dunams were built-up land.[15]

1948 and aftermath[edit]

The village was depopulated during the 1948 Arab-Israeli War between November 4–5, 1948 at the end of Operation Yo'av.[5] The Israeli army found about 150 people in Al-Khisas and nearby Ni'ilya; they were all expelled to Beit Hanoun on the Gaza strip.[16]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Palmer, 1881, p. 361
  2. ^ a b Department of Statistics, 1945, p. 32
  3. ^ a b Government of Palestine, Department of Statistics. Village Statistics, April, 1945. Quoted in Hadawi, 1970, p. 46
  4. ^ Morris, 2004, p. xix, village #308. Also gives the cause for depopulation
  5. ^ a b c d e Khalidi, 1992, p.123
  6. ^ al-Khisas, Palestine Remembered, retrieved 2009-10-22 
  7. ^ Robinson and Smith, 1841, vol 3, Appendix 2, p. 119
  8. ^ Socin, 1879, p. 149
  9. ^ Hartmann, 1883, p. 149
  10. ^ Conder and Kitchener, 1883, SWP III, p. 252
  11. ^ Barron, 1923, Table V, Sub-district of Gaza, p. 8
  12. ^ Mills, 1932, p. 5.
  13. ^ Government of Palestine, Department of Statistics. Village Statistics, April, 1945. Quoted in Hadawi, 1970, p. 46
  14. ^ Government of Palestine, Department of Statistics. Village Statistics, April, 1945. Quoted in Hadawi, 1970, p. 87
  15. ^ Government of Palestine, Department of Statistics. Village Statistics, April, 1945. Quoted in Hadawi, 1970, p. 137
  16. ^ Morris, 2004, pp. 517-518

Bibliography[edit]

External links[edit]