|• Arabic||بيت سيرا|
|• Also spelled||Bayt Sira (official)|
|Governorate||Ramallah & al-Bireh|
|• Type||Village council|
|• Jurisdiction||3,120 dunams (3.1 km2 or 1.2 sq mi)|
|Name meaning||The house of the fold|
Beit Sira (Arabic: بيت سيرا) is a Palestinian village in the central West Bank, located 22 kilometers west of Ramallah and is a part of the Ramallah and al-Bireh Governorate. The village is situated along the Green Line. During the 1948 Arab-Israeli War, around 4,000 dunams of its land became a part of the "No-Man's Land" strip between the north-central West Bank and Israel. Currently Beit Sira's jurisdiction is 3,120 dunams, of which 441 dunams are built-up areas and the remainder is open spaces for future construction or agricultural land.
In 1596 Beit Sira was a part of the nahiya ("subdistrict") of Ramla, which was under the administration of the liwa ("district") of Gaza, in the Ottoman Empire. In the tax records that year it had a population of 17 household who were all Muslims. They paid a fixed tax-rate of 25 % on agricultural products, including wheat, barley, summer crops, vineyards, fruit trees, goats and beehives, in addition to occasional revenues; a total of 4,500 Akçe. All of the revenue went to a Waqf.
In 1863 Victor Guérin noted Beit Sira as a considerable village on the summit of a rocky hill. A saint, revered under the name of Neby Sira, had a sanctuary there with his tomb. Socin, citing an official Ottoman village list compiled around 1870, noted that Bet Sira had 39 houses and a population of 125, though the population count included men, only. Hartmann examining the same list, found that Bet Sira had 29 houses.
In 1883, the Palestine Exploration Fund's Survey of Western Palestine (SWP) described it: "A small village on a swell in the low hills. A main road passes through it. The water supply is artificial."
Mandatory Palestine era
In 1945 the population was 540, all Muslims, while the total land area was 4,687 dunams, according to an official land and population survey. Of this, 205 dunams were plantations and irrigable land, 1,924 for cereals, while 23 dunams were classified as built-up areas.
After the Six-Day War in 1967, Beit Sira has been under Israeli occupation. According to the Palestinian Central Bureau of Statistics, Beit Sira had a population of 2,840 inhabitants in 2006. In the 2007 PCBS census, there were 2,749 people living in the town.
- Palmer, 1881, p. 287
- Beit Sira: A Palestinian Village on the verge of diminishing Archived November 19, 2016, at the Wayback Machine. Applied Research Institute - Jerusalem. 5 July 2004.
- Hütteroth and Abdulfattah, 1977, p. 156
- Guérin, 1868, pp. 337-338
- Socin, 1879, p. 147
- Hartmann, 1883, p. 118
- Conder and Kitchener, 1883, SWP III, p. 16
- Barron, 1923, Table VII, Sub-district of Ramallah, p. 16
- Mills, 1932, p. 47
- Department of Statistics, 1945, p. 26
- Government of Palestine, Department of Statistics. Village Statistics, April, 1945. Quoted in Hadawi, 1970, p. 64
- Government of Palestine, Department of Statistics. Village Statistics, April, 1945. Quoted in Hadawi, 1970, p. 111
- Government of Palestine, Department of Statistics. Village Statistics, April, 1945. Quoted in Hadawi, 1970, p. 161
- Projected Mid -Year Population for Ramallah & Al Bireh Governorate by Locality 2004- 2006 Palestinian Central Bureau of Statistics.
- 2007 PCBS Census. Palestinian Central Bureau of Statistics. p.114.
- Barron, J. B., ed. (1923). Palestine: Report and General Abstracts of the Census of 1922. Government of Palestine.
- Conder, Claude Reignier; Kitchener, H. H. (1883). The Survey of Western Palestine: Memoirs of the Topography, Orography, Hydrography, and Archaeology. 3. London: Committee of the Palestine Exploration Fund.
- Department of Statistics (1945). Village Statistics, April, 1945. Government of Palestine.
- Guérin, Victor (1868). Description Géographique Historique et Archéologique de la Palestine (in French). 1: Judee, pt. 1. Paris: L'Imprimerie Nationale.
- Hadawi, Sami (1970). Village Statistics of 1945: A Classification of Land and Area ownership in Palestine. Palestine Liberation Organization Research Center.
- Hartmann, M. (1883). "Die Ortschaftenliste des Liwa Jerusalem in dem türkischen Staatskalender für Syrien auf das Jahr 1288 der Flucht (1871)". Zeitschrift des Deutschen Palästina-Vereins. 6: 102–149.
- Hütteroth, Wolf-Dieter; Abdulfattah, Kamal (1977). Historical Geography of Palestine, Transjordan and Southern Syria in the Late 16th Century. Erlanger Geographische Arbeiten, Sonderband 5. Erlangen, Germany: Vorstand der Fränkischen Geographischen Gesellschaft. ISBN 3-920405-41-2.
- Mills, E., ed. (1932). Census of Palestine 1931. Population of Villages, Towns and Administrative Areas. Jerusalem: Government of Palestine.
- Palmer, E. H. (1881). The Survey of Western Palestine: Arabic and English Name Lists Collected During the Survey by Lieutenants Conder and Kitchener, R. E. Transliterated and Explained by E.H. Palmer. Committee of the Palestine Exploration Fund.
- Socin, A. (1879). "Alphabetisches Verzeichniss von Ortschaften des Paschalik Jerusalem". Zeitschrift des Deutschen Palästina-Vereins. 2: 135–163.
- Welcome To Bayt Sira
- Survey of Western Palestine, Map 17: IAA, Wikimedia commons
- Beit Sira Village (Fact Sheet), Applied Research Institute - Jerusalem (ARIJ)
- Beit Sira Village Profile, Applied Research Institute - Jerusalem (ARIJ)
- beit Sira, aerial photo, Applied Research Institute - Jerusalem (ARIJ)
- Locality Development Priorities and Needs in Beit Sira Village, Applied Research Institute - Jerusalem (ARIJ)
- The Israeli aggressive measures continue in Beit Sira village, POICA