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Settlers damage trees after harvesting olives, locals say

Oct. 6, 2010 3:47 P.M. (Updated: Oct. 7, 2010 9:28 A.M.)
NABLUS (Ma’an) -- Israeli settlers damaged 16 olives trees belonging to residents in the Nablus region on Wednesday after harvesting the olives and depriving several families of their income source, the village council chief said.

Rashed Mazar, Yanun village chief, told Ma'an that residents saw settlers from the Gideonim outpost in the Itamar settlement leave nearby agricultural lands in a jeep, towing a wagon filled with olive leaves behind it.

He added that settlers living on the illegal outpost began bulldozing land to make way for a road leading to the homes there. He said the road would eat up several dunums of farm land, and make accessing the lands left difficult, since the land would basically be appropriated by the settlers and the outpost would be entrenched.

North of Yanun, head of the Palestinian Authority northern settlement activity file Ghassan Doughlas said settlers from the Yitzhar settlement uprooted nearly 50 trees in the Anukara area of the Huwwara village south of Nablus, owned by Najeh Issa Muhammad Odeh.

Doughlas called on the international community to pressure Israel into halting settler assaults against Palestinian crops, particularly during the olive harvesting season.

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