Ibdis is located in Mandatory Palestine
Arabic عبدس
Also Spelled 'Ibdis
District Gaza
Coordinates 31°40′38.31″N 34°41′55.27″E / 31.6773083°N 34.6986861°E / 31.6773083; 34.6986861Coordinates: 31°40′38.31″N 34°41′55.27″E / 31.6773083°N 34.6986861°E / 31.6773083; 34.6986861
Population 540 (1945)
Area 4,593 dunums

4.6 km²

Date of depopulation July 8-9, 1948[1]
Cause(s) of depopulation Military assault by Yishuv forces
Current localities Merkaz Shapira

Ibdis (Arabic: عبدس‎, ‘Ibdis) was a Palestinian village in the District of Gaza, located 30 kilometers (19 mi) northeast of Gaza City. It was situated on flat ground on the coastal plain at an elevation of 75 meters (246 ft) above sea level, and bordered by a wadi that bore its name on its eastern side. In 1945, Ibdis had a population of 540 and a land area of 4,593 dunams, of which 18 dunams were built-up areas.[2]



Under the Ottomans, in the 1596, Ibdis was a village in the nahiya of Gaza, part of the Sanjak of Gaza. With a population of 193, it paid taxes on wheat, barley, sesame, fruits, vineyards, beehives, and goats.[3] In the late 19th century, it was a mid-sized village standing on open ground.[4] During the British Mandate period, its houses were built of adobe brick and separated by narrow alleys. Toward the end of the Mandate period, new homes were constructed along the two roads that linked it with Majdal and the Jaffa Road. The village's Muslim community obtained water for domestic use from a 55 meters (180 ft) deep well. However, because the number of drilled wells was limited, the residents relied largely on rainfall for their crops. Ibdis was well-known in the Gaza region for its quality grains, including wheat, barley, and sorghum. In the later period, fruit trees were grown, including grapes, apricots, and oranges.[2]

1948 War

The daily Palestinian newspaper Filastin reported in mid-February 1948, that Israeli forces arrived at Ibdis in three large vehicles on the evening of February 17. They were engaged by the local militia and a clash ensued which went on for over an hour. until the attackers retreated to Negba. According the account, none of the residents were injured.[2]

On July 8, as the first truce of the 1948 Arab-Israeli War was about to end, Israel's Givati Brigade moved on the southern front to link up with Israeli forces in the Negev. Although, they did not succeed in this mission, they managed to capture numerous villages in the area, including Ibdis. The Third Battalion of the brigade attacked the village at night, resulting in a 'long battle" with two companies of the Egyptian Army stationed there. The Israelis "only finished cleaning the position by the hours of the morning", according to Haganah accounts. It is unclear whether the inhabitants of Ibdis were expelled at that time, but the Haganah claims military equipment was taken was from the Egyptians.[2]

Egyptian forces tried to recapture the village on July 10, but failed after suffering "heavy losses" when combating Israeli forces stationed there. According to the Haganah, the second Israeli victory at Ibdis was a turning point in the Givati advance, since onwards the brigade's forces did not withdraw from a single position until the end of the war. There was another failed attempt to capture the village on July 12. Egyptian president Gamal Abdel Nasser, who was a junior officer on this front recalled "On the first day of the truce the enemy [Israeli forces] moved against the Arab village of 'Ibdis which interpenetrated our lines".[2]

See also

  • List of Arab towns and villages depopulated during the 1948 Arab-Israeli War


  1. ^ Morris, 2004, p. xix, village #288. Also gives cause of depopulation
  2. ^ a b c d e Khalidi, 1992, pp.104-105.
  3. ^ Hütteroth, Wolf-Dieter and Kamal Abdulfattah (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. p. 149. Quoted in Khalidi, 1992, p. 105
  4. ^ Conder and Kitchener, SWP, Vol. 2, 1881, p.409, Also cited in Khalidi, 1992, p. 105


External links

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