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Settlers 'attack family near Qalqiliya, injuring toddler'

Dec. 13, 2011 10:12 A.M. (Updated: Dec. 14, 2011 6:51 A.M.)
QALQILIYA (Ma'an) -- Settlers threw rocks at a Palestinian car on a main road east of Qalqiliya on Monday, injuring three people including a toddler, the driver of the vehicle said.

Adnan Suwwan told Ma'an that he was traveling back from al-Nabi Elias village with his family when a group of settlers stopped the car and started throwing stones at the vehicle, smashing the windshield.

“It was only God’s mercy that prevented a disaster after a huge stone penetrated the windshield,” Suwwan said, adding that Israeli military patrols were in the area but did not intervene.

The family was taken to hospital by the Palestinian Red Crescent and treated for light injuries.

Settler attacks in the West Bank against Palestinians are extremely common. One of the Israeli army's tasks in the West Bank is to protect settlers, and they rarely intervene to prevent attacks on Palestinians.

The Israeli legal system also provides scant protection for Palestinian victims of settler violence.

Annual figures compiled by the Israeli rights group Yesh Din have repeatedly shown that nine out of 10 police investigations about settler crimes fail to lead to a prosecution.

Settler-related incidents resulting in Palestinian injuries and damage to property are up more than 50 percent this year, according to the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs, which documents violence in the West Bank and Gaza.
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