Palestine: 2 Palestinians hurt, olive trees destroyed in Israeli settler attacks in West Bank

By Awad Rajoub

RAMALLAH, Palestine (AA): Two Palestinians were injured and dozens of olive trees destroyed in attacks by Israeli settlers in the occupied West Bank city on Sunday, according to medics.

In a statement, the Palestinian Red Crescent Society said two Palestinians were hospitalized in the town of Burqa after being badly beaten by settlers.

Israeli settlers also uprooted around 260 olive trees in the town of Deir Sharaf, west of Nablus, Palestinian farmer Ghazi Antari told Anadolu.

Israeli settlers also broke on Sunday into Palestinian-owned lands and destroyed crops belonging to Palestinian farmers in Masafer Yatta region, to the south of Hebron in the occupied West Bank, according to Wafa news Agency.

Rateb Jabour, a local Palestinian activist, told Wafa that Israeli settlers also let their sheep graze on Palestinian-owned crops, destroying large amounts of barley, wheat and olive crops. The crops are owned by the Palestinian families of Jundi, Jabarin, Zuwedin, and Makhamreh.

He said the attacks coincide with the grazing season, and that Israeli settler groups are deliberately targeting Palestinian agriculture in the area at this particular time of the year when local farmers harvest their crops and store them to feed their sheep later during the year. Of note, animal husbandry is the main source of livelihood for the Palestinian Bedouin families of Masafer Yatta.

In yet another Israeli settler attack, Israeli settlers assaulted a Palestinian herder Sunday and stole a number of sheep while the latter was grazing sheep near the town of Aqraba, to the south of Nablus, according to local sources.

Ghassan Daghlas, a Palestinian official in charge of the settlement file in the Nablus province, told Wafa that a group of Israeli settlers assaulted Bassam Bani Fadl, a local Palestinian resident and herder, and beat him up while he was tending sheep in open pastures in the vicinity of the town.

Daghlas added that the assaulting settlers stole 14 sheep in the aftermath of the attack

The attacks came amid rising tensions across the West Bank amid repeated Israeli military raids into Palestinian towns.

More than 100 Palestinians have been killed by Israeli fire since the start of this year, according to Palestinian figures. Sixteen Israelis have also been killed in separate attacks during the same period.

UN data shows Israeli settlers had launched 314 attacks on Palestinians and their property in the West Bank since the start of this year.

*Writing by Ikram Kouachi​

Additional report form Wafa News Agency

[Photo:  Relatives mourn during the funeral of 15-year-old Palestinian, Mostafa Amir Sabah, killed by Israeli forces in Teqoa town of Bethlehem Governorate, West Bank on April 29, 2023. Photographer: Issam Rimawi/AA]


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