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WADI HILWAH 1967 – 1987

Soon after the 1967 War, Israel formally annexed East Jerusalem into the municipal borders of Jerusalem. Silwan grew rapidly and welcomed many Palestinian refugees from the ’48 and ’67 wars. However, development in Palestinian neighborhoods in East Jerusalem was little compared to in other parts of the city.

Nevertheless, the 70s and the beginning of the 80s were also a period of hope for the village, and especially for the residents of Wadi Hilwah neighborhood, which was the closest to the old city walls. The village was teeming with visitors. The archaeology attracted many tourists, who the residents welcomed heartily: with them came somewhat financial stability.

Wadi Hilwah in the 70s, looking from Shiloah/Silwan Pool

In Haj Musa Hamada Siyam’s coffeehouse (today, only the entrance sign is left…) one could often find local Palestinian residents, Israeli archaeologists and tourists sitting together. Also, at that time several young Israelis lived in the village and had good neighborly relationships with the Palestinians.

The entrance sign of Haj Musa Hamada Siyam’s coffeehouse
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