Understanding The Map Of Jerusalem, Or Trying To

A view of Jerusalem’s Old City.

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Oded Balilty/AP

The U.S. marks the opening of its embassy to Israel in Jerusalem with a large ceremony Monday. In physical terms, it’s just a move of the ambassador and some staff from Tel Aviv to a large consular building that already exists.

But it carries political significance that’s reverberating around an already-tense Middle East: After decades of U.S. policy saying the status of the disputed city should be settled in peace talks between Israelis and Palestinians, the Trump administration is now saying the city is Israel’s capital.

It puts the U.S. in a distinct world minority. The U.N. General Assembly, by a vote of 128 to 9, condemned the move last December. Most of the world’s governments do not recognize the city as either Israel’s or as the Palestinians’.

And even the Trump administration, while it’s making the move, says the actual borders of the city are still subject to negotiation — maybe the Palestinians, who make up 38 percent of the city’s population, can still have part for their capital.

Here’s how complex the situation is: The State Department said it would list the address of the embassy as Jerusalem, Israel. But on passports issued to U.S. citizens born there — at least as of last week — the place of birth still reads simply “Jerusalem,” with no country. That’s been the practice for years.

What’s clear is that both Palestinians and Israelis live in the city and have deep historic and religious ties there. And it’s been a flashpoint.

The western side of the city is home to Jewish Israelis and Israel’s government. It’s not really contested and would be expected to remain with Israel in any peace talks.

The eastern side — including key Jewish, Muslim and Christian holy sites — was captured by Israel in 1967. It’s populated by Palestinians who seek it for their capital. Israelis are increasing their numbers there and it’s highly contested.

The Green Line

Here’s a map that lays out major sections of the city. The boundaries have names like the “Green Line” and the “separation barrier,” but not “border.”

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To start unraveling this, follow the Green Line. That line, sometimes straight, sometimes in squiggles or confounding loops, separates the territory that Israel and Jordan controlled when an armistice was signed ending the 1948-1949 Arab-Israeli war shortly after Israel’s creation.

Historical Boundaries

Map showing Jerusalem's boundaries since 1949

Source: Map data by Daniel Seidemann/Terrestrial Jerusalem. Labeling by NPR.

Credit: Daniel Estrin, Alyson Hurt, Larry Kaplow, Brittany Mayes and Greg Myre/NPR

Before that time, Jews and Arabs lived throughout the city. With the end of the war, fences went up and Israelis were in west Jerusalem, Arabs in the east. The walled Old City was under Jordanian control; Jews were expelled from the Old City’s Jewish quarter and were barred from the Western Wall, the holiest site for Jewish prayer. Palestinians abandoned homes in the west as they fled to the east.

The Green Line had its quirks — it wrapped around areas that were not entirely claimed by the Israeli and Jordanian sides. One of the areas, just south of the Old City, is referred to as the U.N. zone on this map — its areas were subdivided between the U.N., Israel and Jordan. Today it’s all under Israeli control and is where the U.S. built its consulate — now to serve as its embassy.

According to Daniel Seidemann, an Israeli lawyer who has opposed Jewish settlements in east Jerusalem and briefs U.S. officials about the city (and whose mapping was used as the basis of the maps on this page), the U.S. consulate sits on what had been the Israeli part of this sort of no-man’s land. Part of the consulate also rests right on the Green Line and extends into western Jerusalem.

1967 and occupied territory

In the 1967 Arab-Israeli war, Israel captured the eastern portion of the city from Jordan. It still holds it now, and Israel considers it part of Israel. But in the eyes of the U.N. and nearly all governments, it’s seen as occupied territory.

The U.S. consulate, to become the embassy on Monday, is not on occupied territory, because it does not sit on land captured in 1967.

The people

The next controversy these maps highlight is the population mix in the city. Since 1949, the western side of the city has been populated almost entirely by Jewish Israelis.

And Israel has encouraged the growth of Jewish neighborhoods in the eastern side of the city, amid the largely Palestinian population. (You see those in the map’s blue sections in east Jerusalem).

A partial view taken on April 30 shows the U.S. Consulate in Jerusalem.

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Israel also took control in 1967 of the Old City, where Jews have returned to live and to pray at the Western Wall. Palestinians also still live there and come by the thousands each week to pray at the Al-Aqsa Mosque complex on the hill above the wall.

With the status of the city unresolved, Israelis who move to occupied areas of eastern Jerusalem are seen by most of the world as settlers. Israel, not recognizing the city as occupied, rejects that label. Palestinians say Israel is using settlers to divide their neighborhoods and diminish the Palestinian presence in the city.

(To clarify the distinction, Israel captured the West Bank in 1967 as well, but has not declared it a part of Israel. That occupied territory is under the authority of the Israeli military and Israel regularly calls Israelis who live there “settlers.”)

The separation barrier

A new line has been created over the last 15 years or so. Israel’s separation barrier — a wall in some places, a fence in others — was built to stop Palestinian attackers, according to Israel, which says it’s for security. The Palestinians see it as a land grab, taking more territory the Palestinians seek for a future state. In general, the barrier travels on or near the eastern edge of Jerusalem, though there are a number of exceptions.

It means thousands of Palestinians have to pass through checkpoints to get in from the city’s fringes.

The growing city

One more shape-shifter on these maps: The Jerusalem city limits are much bigger than they were after the 1949 war. Israel has enlarged the boundaries since then, including both Jewish and Palestinian neighborhoods within the expanded city limits. And since Israel declares sovereignty in the city, Palestinians see the growth through their areas as a way for Israel to claim more territory.

A peace plan?

Even with the support President Trump has given Israel’s claim to the city, he might still unveil a peace plan that would ask Israel to give up some of the Palestinian-populated areas to Palestinian control (or even a future state). That would be a concession by Israel.

Lately some Israeli lawmakers have proposed unilaterally removing some Palestinian neighborhoods from Jerusalem’s boundaries as a way to strengthen the Jewish majority in the city.

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'Black Panther' Star Chadwick Boseman Lauds Student Activism In Howard Commencement

Actor and alumnus Chadwick Boseman delivers the keynote address at Howard University’s commencement ceremony for the 2018 graduating class. Boseman received an honorary degree, Doctor of Humane Letters. (Photo by Cheriss May) (Photo by Cheriss May/NurPhoto via Getty Images)

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Black Panther star Chadwick Boseman spoke to graduates of his alma mater, Howard University, this weekend at the university’s commencement, and said they should always be fueled by a sense of purpose, and face life’s challenges without fear. The South Carolina native graduated from Howard with a Bachelor of Fine Arts in 2000, and told the Class of 2018 the campus represents “the culmination of the intellectual and spiritual journey you undergo while you were here.”

“That is the magic of this place,” Boseman said. “Anything can happen here.” After graduating from Howard, Boseman attended the British American Dramatic Academy at Oxford. He quickly got acting jobs, first as the lead of a New York City play, and later, on a soap opera. It was in his television role that Boseman said he encountered a conflict between his professional ambitions, and personal values and beliefs.

In the soap opera Boseman played a young black man, with an absent father, and drug-addicted mother, who was lured by a gang. Boseman felt the role played on stereotypes. “I found myself conflicted,” he said. “The role seemed to be wrapped up in assumptions about us as black folk – hardly any positivity.”

After he voiced his concerns to the show’s executives, Boseman said he was fired.

“What do you do when the principles and standards that were instilled in you here at Howard close the doors in front of you? Sometimes you need to get knocked down before you can really figure out what your fight is.”


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Boseman urged graduates to, like him, “Take the harder way, the more complicated one, the one with more failures at first than successes. … then you will not regret it.”

He praised student protests over a financial aid scandal, campus housing, and tuition increases, which roiled the campus earlier this year with sit-in demonstrations, and demands for the university president to resign. In April, students took over the administration building for eight days. “Everything that you fought for was not for yourself, it was for those who came after you,” Boseman said, also lauding the administration for listening to the student protesters, and vowing to make change.

The King has arrived! @chadwickboseman #howardgrad18 pic.twitter.com/48GIdwX3wh

— whur.com (@WHURfm) May 12, 2018

“Purpose is the essential element of you,” Boseman told the graduates. “It is the reason you are on the planet at this particular time in history. Your very existence is wrapped up in the things you are here to fulfill.”

Other prominent Howard University students and alums include Toni Morrison, Thurgood Marshall, Zora Neale Hurston, and Roberta Flack. The Washington Post reports more than 2,000 students will receive degrees from Howard, referred to as “the Mecca” of black education in the U.S., in 2018.

Congratulations to the @HowardU Class of 2018 and Dr. Chadwick Boseman! #HowardGrad18 #HowardForever pic.twitter.com/lmxOGGmOAa

— Shavonn Richardson (@shavonnrichson) May 12, 2018

“Savor the taste of your triumphs today,” Boseman implored graduates on Saturday. “Don’t just swallow the moment whole without digesting what is actually happening here. Look down over what you conquered and appreciate what God has brought you through.”

During the commencement, Howard University awarded Boseman with the university’s highest honor, an honorary doctorate degree, Doctor of Humane Letters. Boseman said he will lead a campaign to create a separate college of fine arts at the university; at present, Howard has a division of fine arts.

As he wrapped his speech, Boseman did his now famous “Wakanda salute” saying, “Howard forever.”

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Palestinians In Jerusalem Struggle To Maintain A Foothold In The City They Call Home

Raja Tamimi must cross the Qalandia checkpoint to commute to her job in Jerusalem’s Old City.

Daniel Estrin


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Daniel Estrin

When the U.S. opens its new embassy in Jerusalem on Monday and endorses the city as the capital of Israel, it will also be endorsing a strange reality. About 38 percent of the city’s residents are not Israeli at all. They are Palestinian. And they want to establish their own capital in the city.

Israel refuses. Instead, Israel has reshaped Jerusalem in a way that leaves many Palestinians struggling to maintain their foothold in the city that is their home.

Since the mid-2000s, according to census figures, tens of thousands of the city’s Palestinians live behind a concrete wall that cuts through the city. It’s part of the barrier Israel built during a wave of Palestinian attacks in the early 2000s to keep attackers out.

It makes for a complicated commute to work for Palestinians like Raja Tamimi, who works as a guesthouse receptionist in the Old City. First, she boards a shared taxi at 6 a.m. On a recent morning, the driver barreled down the wrong lane, past a line of cars waiting to get through the checkpoint.

“It’s very dangerous,” Tamimi says. “But if he don’t do that, he will not reach here.”

A sign at an Israeli checkpoint warns Israelis not to enter. A Palestinian neighborhood is located behind the checkpoint.

Daniel Estrin


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Daniel Estrin

“Here” is the Qalandia checkpoint, with military guard towers and a tall concrete wall covered in “Free Palestine” graffiti and murals showing famous Palestinian political and militant figures.

Per Israeli rules, the taxi driver is not permitted to drive through the checkpoint. And Tamimi says she’s not allowed to take a bus through the checkpoint because she’s under 45 years old. She could walk through the checkpoint, pass through a metal detector and show her ID card to a soldier behind bulletproof glass, but that would take too long with other Palestinian Jerusalem residents crowding the line during morning rush hour.

So she flags down a ride from a private driver who’s made it to the front of the line and gives her a ride through the checkpoint to work.

She said her hour-and-a-half morning commute would take 20 minutes if there were no wall or checkpoint.

“It’s not fair,” Tamimi said. “I have to hurry. It’s not easy, it’s not normal to go to the checkpoint, see this bad view. It’s not good.”

She didn’t always live behind a wall. She used to rent a home that overlooked the Old City, but she wanted to buy a home of her own. Israel provides few building permits that would allow Palestinian neighborhoods in Jerusalem to expand, and housing prices were at a premium.

She felt she had few options but to move behind the Israeli barrier to Qufr Aqab, a neglected Jerusalem neighborhood where she could afford to buy a home.

“I hate to rent and move from this house to this house – it’s not easy and it’s not fair. You don’t feel safely. You have all the time thinking about the future,” Tamimi said.

Akram Tamimi, 79, moved to a neighborhood behind the barrier to maintain his Jerusalem residency rights, but calls it “a prison.”

Daniel Estrin


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Daniel Estrin

She has considered applying for Israeli citizenship, which would cement her status as a citizen of Israel rather than the lesser status of resident in the city. It’s something many Palestinians scorn as surrendering to an occupier; Israel often rejects applications anyway, sometimes citing security reasons.

Her 79-year-old father Akram Tamimi also uprooted to the same neighborhood behind the barrier.

“We call it a prison. Not a life,” he said.

He used to live in a four-story home with a garden on the edge of the city. But in the mid-1990s, the geopolitics of the region changed. His home was deemed to be a part of the West Bank and under partial Palestinian self-rule.

If he stayed there, Israel could strip him of his Jerusalem residency rights – and his access to Israeli health insurance and Jerusalem hospitals.

“Because of that,” he explained, “I came here. Just looking for the future health.”

He lives behind the Israeli barrier, where Israeli police don’t often patrol, where Israeli ambulances don’t enter. If he would need to rush to the hospital, a Palestinian ambulance would take him to the checkpoint, where he’d have to be transferred to an Israeli ambulance on the other side.

“Many times the sick person died before arriving to the hospital,” he said.

He has Israeli friends, but they don’t visit — a big red sign at the barrier warns Israelis not to enter. This area is not Palestinian-controlled territory. It is still a part of Israeli-controlled Jerusalem.

“This is very good to animals. Not to human beings,” he said.

President Trump has said the final borders of Jerusalem are subject to negotiation, hinting that Palestinians could still establish their hoped-for capital in parts of East Jerusalem.

Israeli lawmaker Michael Oren suggests that President Trump’s promised peace plan may require Israel to make concessions.

Palestinians go through an Israeli checkpoint at the Israeli separation barrier, which cuts through some neighborhoods of East Jerusalem.

Daniel Estrin


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Daniel Estrin

“Let’s discuss it. Do not reject it out of hand. Even if it has aspects difficult to us, including aspects relating to Jerusalem,” Oren said.

Even without a peace plan, some Israeli lawmakers want Israel to redraw municipal boundaries, to remove Palestinian neighborhoods of East Jerusalem from the city limits, in an effort to decrease the percentage of Palestinians considered part of the city and therefore tip the scales in favor of the city’s Jewish majority.

What would happen to those Palestinian neighborhoods varies depending on the proposal. Some say they should become a new Israeli municipality — keeping the territory in Israeli hands while not allowing its Palestinian population to outweigh Jerusalem’s Jewish population. Others say the neighborhoods should be handed over to Palestinian control and become a Palestinian capital.

If Israel does withdraw from Palestinian neighborhoods, like where Raja Tamimi lives — she says she’d move again to make sure she could stay in the city that’s her home, and maintain the Israeli residency rights she is guaranteed as a resident of Jerusalem, like national health insurance and access to the Israeli job market.

“We want to live in Jerusalem,” she says, “because we want the ID. You don’t want a good life?”

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Palestinians In Jerusalem Struggle To Maintain A Foothold In The City They Call Home

Raja Tamimi must cross the Qalandia checkpoint to commute to her job in Jerusalem’s Old City.

Daniel Estrin


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Daniel Estrin

When the U.S. opens its new embassy in Jerusalem on Monday and endorses the city as the capital of Israel, it will also be endorsing a strange reality. About 38 percent of the city’s residents are not Israeli at all. They are Palestinian. And they want to establish their own capital in the city.

Israel refuses. Instead, Israel has reshaped Jerusalem in a way that leaves many Palestinians struggling to maintain their foothold in the city that is their home.

Since the mid-2000s, according to census figures, tens of thousands of the city’s Palestinians live behind a concrete wall that cuts through the city. It’s part of the barrier Israel built during a wave of Palestinian attacks in the early 2000s to keep attackers out.

It makes for a complicated commute to work for Palestinians like Raja Tamimi, who works as a guesthouse receptionist in the Old City. First, she boards a shared taxi at 6 a.m. On a recent morning, the driver barreled down the wrong lane, past a line of cars waiting to get through the checkpoint.

“It’s very dangerous,” Tamimi says. “But if he don’t do that, he will not reach here.”

A sign at an Israeli checkpoint warns Israelis not to enter. A Palestinian neighborhood is located behind the checkpoint.

Daniel Estrin


hide caption

toggle caption

Daniel Estrin

“Here” is the Qalandia checkpoint, with military guard towers and a tall concrete wall covered in “Free Palestine” graffiti and murals showing famous Palestinian political and militant figures.

Per Israeli rules, the taxi driver is not permitted to drive through the checkpoint. And Tamimi says she’s not allowed to take a bus through the checkpoint because she’s under 45 years old. She could walk through the checkpoint, pass through a metal detector and show her ID card to a soldier behind bulletproof glass, but that would take too long with other Palestinian Jerusalem residents crowding the line during morning rush hour.

So she flags down a ride from a private driver who’s made it to the front of the line and gives her a ride through the checkpoint to work.

She said her hour-and-a-half morning commute would take 20 minutes if there were no wall or checkpoint.

“It’s not fair,” Tamimi said. “I have to hurry. It’s not easy, it’s not normal to go to the checkpoint, see this bad view. It’s not good.”

She didn’t always live behind a wall. She used to rent a home that overlooked the Old City, but she wanted to buy a home of her own. Israel provides few building permits that would allow Palestinian neighborhoods in Jerusalem to expand, and housing prices were at a premium.

She felt she had few options but to move behind the Israeli barrier to Qufr Aqab, a neglected Jerusalem neighborhood where she could afford to buy a home.

“I hate to rent and move from this house to this house – it’s not easy and it’s not fair. You don’t feel safely. You have all the time thinking about the future,” Tamimi said.

Akram Tamimi, 79, moved to a neighborhood behind the barrier to maintain his Jerusalem residency rights, but calls it “a prison.”

Daniel Estrin


hide caption

toggle caption

Daniel Estrin

She has considered applying for Israeli citizenship, which would cement her status as a citizen of Israel rather than the lesser status of resident in the city. It’s something many Palestinians scorn as surrendering to an occupier; Israel often rejects applications anyway, sometimes citing security reasons.

Her 79-year-old father Akram Tamimi also uprooted to the same neighborhood behind the barrier.

“We call it a prison. Not a life,” he said.

He used to live in a four-story home with a garden on the edge of the city. But in the mid-1990s, the geopolitics of the region changed. His home was deemed to be a part of the West Bank and under partial Palestinian self-rule.

If he stayed there, Israel could strip him of his Jerusalem residency rights – and his access to Israeli health insurance and Jerusalem hospitals.

“Because of that,” he explained, “I came here. Just looking for the future health.”

He lives behind the Israeli barrier, where Israeli police don’t often patrol, where Israeli ambulances don’t enter. If he would need to rush to the hospital, a Palestinian ambulance would take him to the checkpoint, where he’d have to be transferred to an Israeli ambulance on the other side.

“Many times the sick person died before arriving to the hospital,” he said.

He has Israeli friends, but they don’t visit — a big red sign at the barrier warns Israelis not to enter. This area is not Palestinian-controlled territory. It is still a part of Israeli-controlled Jerusalem.

“This is very good to animals. Not to human beings,” he said.

President Trump has said the final borders of Jerusalem are subject to negotiation, hinting that Palestinians could still establish their hoped-for capital in parts of East Jerusalem.

Israeli lawmaker Michael Oren suggests that President Trump’s promised peace plan may require Israel to make concessions.

Palestinians go through an Israeli checkpoint at the Israeli separation barrier, which cuts through some neighborhoods of East Jerusalem.

Daniel Estrin


hide caption

toggle caption

Daniel Estrin

“Let’s discuss it. Do not reject it out of hand. Even if it has aspects difficult to us, including aspects relating to Jerusalem,” Oren said.

Even without a peace plan, some Israeli lawmakers want Israel to redraw municipal boundaries, to remove Palestinian neighborhoods of East Jerusalem from the city limits, in an effort to decrease the percentage of Palestinians considered part of the city and therefore tip the scales in favor of the city’s Jewish majority.

What would happen to those Palestinian neighborhoods varies depending on the proposal. Some say they should become a new Israeli municipality — keeping the territory in Israeli hands while not allowing its Palestinian population to outweigh Jerusalem’s Jewish population. Others say the neighborhoods should be handed over to Palestinian control and become a Palestinian capital.

If Israel does withdraw from Palestinian neighborhoods, like where Raja Tamimi lives — she says she’d move again to make sure she could stay in the city that’s her home, and maintain the Israeli residency rights she is guaranteed as a resident of Jerusalem, like national health insurance and access to the Israeli job market.

“We want to live in Jerusalem,” she says, “because we want the ID. You don’t want a good life?”

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André 3000 Returns With New Music In Memory Of His Parents

After years of solo silence, André 3000 returns with two new soul-baring songs.

Paul R. Giunta/FilmMagic


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Mother’s Day 2018 just got real. After years of creative reclusion — intermittently broken by a steady string of dynamic guest vocal appearances on other artists’ projects — André 3000 has released nearly 22 minutes of new music in homage to his deceased parents.

He’s posted the two soul-baring songs, “Me&My (To Bury Your Parents)” and “Look Ma No Hands,” on SoundCloud and even created an Instagram page — likely his first foray into social media — where he’s posted handwritten lyrics to “Me&My (To Bury Your Parents),” along with song credits and a photo from childhood with he and his mother Sharon Benjamin-Hodo. The page also contains screenshots of text messages they exchanged on his 37th birthday, the day before she died in 2013. André lost his father Lawrence Walker less than a year later, in February, 2014.

“Me and my mother drivin’ to the grocery sto’ / me ridin’ shotgun with my window rolled down,” he sings on “Me&My (To Bury Your Parents),” accompanied on piano by Kevin Kendrick. “She smokes cigarettes and gets what she gets by hustlin’ harder / rollers and a nightgown.” His second verse draws the contrast, with André riding shotgun to football games with his dad, who likes to sip cognac and keeps everybody laughing. “I was much happier when he was around…,” he sings. “Zen, he was around.”

While both songs feature André on bass clarinet, the 17-minute “Look Ma No Hands,” is a free-form 17-minute jazz escapade, sans vocals, that finds him improvising in conversation with featured artist James Blake on piano. In a bit of muffled dialogue after the winding song, André can be heard saying, probably to Blake, “looney tunes.”

For fans who’ve been pining for new music from André for years — teased by occasional reports of forthcoming solo projects that never quite surface — this thematic release feels more like an open window into his soul than a sign of more music to come. And while the latter would be more than welcome, it’s pretty amazing that, after such a long, solo silence, André would invite the world to share in his most intimate mourning glory.

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Scientists Warn Of More Eruptions From Hawaii's Big Island Volcano

In this Sunday, May 6, 2018 photo provided by the U.S. Geological Survey, a lava flow moves across Makamae Street in the Leilani Estates subdivision near Pahoa on the island of Hawaii. Kilauea volcano has destroyed more than two dozen homes since it began spewing lava hundreds of feet into the air last week. (U.S. Geological Survey via AP)

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New fissures have opened on Hawaii’s Big Island as earthquakes continue to rock the island, and scientists are warning about further volcanic eruptions.

Officials announced the island’s 17th fissure on Saturday evening, hours after a 16th fissure emerged, releasing lava that traveled 250 yards before settling. That fissure opened near the Puna Geothermal Venture plant, where officials have removed 60,000 gallons of flammable liquid as a precaution.

A shallow earthquake, with a magnitude of 3.5, also hit the island on Saturday.

Nearly 2,000 residents have been ordered to evacuate, and officials say they may force the evacuation of thousands more. Some residents, however, like Scott Wiggers, who lives in Leilani Estates, have refused to leave. Wiggers’ home is just 2 miles from one of the fissures.

“I woke up at about 1 a.m. I heard a roar — and this is 2 miles away — a roar, like a jet engine. I go out, and look out the window, and I see the sky glowing red. I’m seeing this fissure, right before my eyes, open up. A cinder cone being created, and lava spewing in the air, a hundred feet. Where I was standing, and I was standing about 50 yards from that, I could feel the warmth. It was probably 90 degrees Fahrenheit. Then I went down there again, after I got some of my buddies out of bed, and we were standing a little closer, and just the sound, the experience, the ground was shaking.”

The Big Island has nine zones. The volcano eruption has impacted Zone 1, and Zone 2 could also be effected. Officials are warning that further eruptions could spew rocks and boulders, and spread ash plumes 12 miles from the 4,000 foot high volcano summit. Reuters is reporting that respirators have sold out in some stores on the island. Wiggers, however, says he hasn’t bought one, and for now plans to stay in his home.

“No one is forcibly evacuated. That’s why I am still here,” he says. “They want to come and drag us out of our homes, however, they don’t support what we’re doing. I’m talking about civil defense. They don’t agree with what we’re doing.”

We spoke with Scott Wiggers about the latest in the #BigIsland #Kilauea #Hawaii #Volcano. Here he is speaking with @StarAdvertiser.https://t.co/QAfkr4JJdo

— Weekend Edition (@NPRWeekend) May 13, 2018

Since the volcano erupted on May 3, lava flows have destroyed 36 structures on the island, including 27 homes. In some parts of the island lava has piled as high as a four-story building.

Wiggers says, “Over the past 24 hours, the earthquakes have started rumbling again. … When I go out and check on some of the fissures, you can start to see where some of the sulphur deposits are building up, and where the lava rocks are starting to turn yellow.”

Last week, President Trump declared a federal emergency on the island, allowing federal assistance. Most of that aid will go toward repairing roads, water pipes, parks and schools. Reuters reports that officials continue to rescue dozens of pets, as well as horses and livestock.

The volcano’s eruptions are not new — the U.S. geological survey says the volcano has been erupting since 1983. In just the past two years, lava flows have added 443 acres to the island’s southeastern shore. In 1990, 80 feet of lava buried more than 100 homes.

Residents are preparing for further eruptions in the days ahead. Geologists say the lava lake in the volcano’s crater is dropping rapidly, and that could lead to a steam-driven explosion if the lava falls below the water table.

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Scientists Warn Of More Eruptions From Hawaii's Big Island Volcano

In this Sunday, May 6, 2018 photo provided by the U.S. Geological Survey, a lava flow moves across Makamae Street in the Leilani Estates subdivision near Pahoa on the island of Hawaii. Kilauea volcano has destroyed more than two dozen homes since it began spewing lava hundreds of feet into the air last week. (U.S. Geological Survey via AP)

AP


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AP

New fissures have opened on Hawaii’s Big Island as earthquakes continue to rock the island, and scientists are warning about further volcanic eruptions.

Officials announced the island’s 17th fissure on Saturday evening, hours after a 16th fissure emerged, releasing lava that traveled 250 yards before settling. That fissure opened near the Puna Geothermal Venture plant, where officials have removed 60,000 gallons of flammable liquid as a precaution.

A shallow earthquake, with a magnitude of 3.5, also hit the island on Saturday.

Nearly 2,000 residents have been ordered to evacuate, and officials say they may force the evacuation of thousands more. Some residents, however, like Scott Wiggers, who lives in Leilani Estates, have refused to leave. Wiggers’ home is just 2 miles from one of the fissures.

“I woke up at about 1 a.m. I heard a roar — and this is 2 miles away — a roar, like a jet engine. I go out, and look out the window, and I see the sky glowing red. I’m seeing this fissure, right before my eyes, open up. A cinder cone being created, and lava spewing in the air, a hundred feet. Where I was standing, and I was standing about 50 yards from that, I could feel the warmth. It was probably 90 degrees Fahrenheit. Then I went down there again, after I got some of my buddies out of bed, and we were standing a little closer, and just the sound, the experience, the ground was shaking.”

The Big Island has nine zones. The volcano eruption has impacted Zone 1, and Zone 2 could also be effected. Officials are warning that further eruptions could spew rocks and boulders, and spread ash plumes 12 miles from the 4,000 foot high volcano summit. Reuters is reporting that respirators have sold out in some stores on the island. Wiggers, however, says he hasn’t bought one, and for now plans to stay in his home.

“No one is forcibly evacuated. That’s why I am still here,” he says. “They want to come and drag us out of our homes, however, they don’t support what we’re doing. I’m talking about civil defense. They don’t agree with what we’re doing.”

We spoke with Scott Wiggers about the latest in the #BigIsland #Kilauea #Hawaii #Volcano. Here he is speaking with @StarAdvertiser.https://t.co/QAfkr4JJdo

— Weekend Edition (@NPRWeekend) May 13, 2018

Since the volcano erupted on May 3, lava flows have destroyed 36 structures on the island, including 27 homes. In some parts of the island lava has piled as high as a four-story building.

Wiggers says, “Over the past 24 hours, the earthquakes have started rumbling again. … When I go out and check on some of the fissures, you can start to see where some of the sulphur deposits are building up, and where the lava rocks are starting to turn yellow.”

Last week, President Trump declared a federal emergency on the island, allowing federal assistance. Most of that aid will go toward repairing roads, water pipes, parks and schools. Reuters reports that officials continue to rescue dozens of pets, as well as horses and livestock.

The volcano’s eruptions are not new — the U.S. geological survey says the volcano has been erupting since 1983. In just the past two years, lava flows have added 443 acres to the island’s southeastern shore. In 1990, 80 feet of lava buried more than 100 homes.

Residents are preparing for further eruptions in the days ahead. Geologists say the lava lake in the volcano’s crater is dropping rapidly, and that could lead to a steam-driven explosion if the lava falls below the water table.

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