Khirbat Zalafa


District: Tulkarm

Population 1948: 240

Occupation date: 01/04/1948

Jewish settlements on village/town land before 1948: None

Jewish settlements on village/town land after 1948: None


Before 1948:
The village stood on a small, slightly elevated hill in the middle of a wide plain.  It was linked by secondary roads to neighboring villages, as well as to ‘Attil, the “mother”  village.  Originally residents from Khirbat Zalafa came from ‘Attil to farm the village lands, they eventually settled in the village to be closer to their farms. 

In the late nineteenth century, Khirbat Zalafa was described as a small hamlet with springs to the south.  Agriculture was based on watermelons, vegetables, grain, and olives.

Occupation and Depopulation:
The Haganah command considered the coastal area north of Tel Aviv to be “the core of the emergent Jewish State” and decided to secure it before 15 May 1948, by depopulating it of its Arab inhabitants. During early April a series of expulsion orders were issued to the communities that remained.  About mid-April, Haganah representative reached an agreement that if they left local Zionist settlements would safeguard their homes after the war.  At the end of the month and in early May, the houses of the village (as well as a number others) were systematically destroyed by the Haganah, assisted by the local Zionist settlements.

Israeli Settlements on Village Lands:
There are no Israeli settlements on village land.

The Village Today:
The village has been completely levelled.  Today both the original site and surrounding areas are covered with Israeli citrus orchards.

Source: al-Khalidi, Walid (ed.). All that remains: the Palestinian villages occupied and depopulated by Israel in 1948. Washington DC: 1992.