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B'Tselem: Israeli govt responsible for Qusra attacks

Oct. 7, 2011 11:14 A.M. (Updated: Oct. 10, 2011 10:32 A.M.)
BETHLEHEM (Ma'an) -- Israeli authorities are failing to stop settler attacks on Nablus village Qusra, which has faced a repeated campaign of harassment from Israeli settlers, an Israeli rights group said on Thursday.

Israeli settlers uprooted 200 olive trees in the south of the village overnight Wednesday. Israeli organization B'Tselem said due to a new Israeli army post overlooking the valley, "the attack occurred in an open area with excellent visibility."

"Even if soldiers aren't present there at all times, the security forces maintain an ongoing presence in the area," a press statement from the group said.

"Regardless of whether the soldiers noticed the settlers and chose to ignore them or whether they weren’t present in the area, this is a particularly severe case where the security forces violated their obligation to protect the Palestinian residents and their property," it added.

B'Tselem said it had documented seven cases of Israeli settlers raiding the village in six weeks.

A village mosque was torched and vandalized in early September, and Israeli force killed one villager after settlers broke into the village later in the month.

Qusra is encircled by Jewish-only settlements, which house around 300,000 settlers in the West Bank, among some 2.6 million Palestinians. Settlements on occupied land are considered illegal under international law.
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