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In video: Israeli military accompanies settler attack

Jan. 9, 2014 12:02 P.M. (Updated: Jan. 10, 2014 5:55 P.M.)
BETHLEHEM (Ma'an) -- Israeli human rights group B'Tselem on Wednesday released video footage which shows Israeli soldiers standing among settlers while they attack a Palestinian school with stones in the Nablus village of Urif.

The incident took place on Monday when a group of settlers raided the village and started throwing stones at the Safadi family home, adjacent to the site of a USAID funded water reservoir project.

The settlers then threw stones at a village school.

The video footage, which was filmed by local resident Usama Safadi, clearly shows settlers throwing rocks in the presence of Israeli soldiers.

"The soldiers took no measures to arrest the settlers, to remove them from the area, or at the very least to put an end to the stone-throwing. Several students at the school threw stones back at the settlers and the soldiers fired teargas at the students," B'Tselem said.

The settlers appeared to also be accompanied by a security guard from a settlement.

After 50 minutes, the settlers left the village and headed in the direction of Yizhar settlement. The settlers passed several military vehicles on the way out and no attempt was made to arrest them or identify them.

"The filmed record of the incident indicates that the soldiers acted with disregard to their duty to protect the Palestinians: they did not put an end to the violent acts they witnessed, responding only when Palestinians threw stones back at the settlers," B'Tselem said.

The incident shows that the Israeli military served as a "security entourage" for violent settlers, whereas their responsibility is to defend Palestinians in the West Bank, B'Tselem added.

The rights group said it plans to apply to the relevant authorities to demand an investigation into the incident which examines the conduct of the Israeli soldiers and officers during the events.

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