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Israeli teens indicted for attacks on Palestinians

April 29, 2015 7:11 P.M. (Updated: April 30, 2015 11:39 A.M.)
(AFP/Menahem Kahana)
BETHLEHEM (Ma'an) -- The Jerusalem District Court filed indictments Tuesday against a 19-year-old and two minors from the settlement of Bat Ayin for alleged attacks on Palestinians, Israeli media reported.

The three were charged with racially motivated and aggravated assault, assault on a public servant, racially motivated willful damage to property and other charges, Israeli news source Haaretz said, identifying the perpetrators as Or Shahar, 19, and two minors aged 16 and 17.

The indictment comes amid alleged efforts by Israeli authorities to reverse the current system of impunity for settler violence in the occupied East Jerusalem and West Bank.

Such incidents are often referred to as "price-tag" attacks, acts of violence or vandalism on Palestinians and their property or Israeli military targets carried out in retribution for perceived action by the Israeli government against the settlement enterprise.

Following price-tag attacks on Vatican-owned offices in occupied East Jerusalem in May 2014, Israeli Internal Security Minister Yitzhak Aharonovitch said the government planned to begin using administrative detention against suspected extremists.

Although police had made scores of arrests, there had been few successful prosecutions for price-tag attacks and the government was facing mounting pressure to authorize the Shin Bet internal security agency to step in.

The first conviction for a price-tag attack was carried out in December 2014, when two settlers were sentenced to 30 months in prison for setting fire to two Palestinian vehicles.

The US State Department's 2013 Country Reports on Terrorism included price-tag attacks for the first time, citing UN figures of some "399 attacks by extremist Israeli settlers that resulted in Palestinian injuries or property damage."

Such attacks were "largely unprosecuted," it said.

Earlier this month the Jerusalem District Court accepted a plea bargain in the case of four teenage Israelis who admitted to setting fire to a Palestinian cafe near Hebron, despite pledges by Israel's Justice Ministry to combat anti-Palestinian hate crime.

The three indicted Tuesday allegedly assaulted a Palestinian worker who came to the Bat Ayin settlement in the occupied West Bank to deliver merchandise that had been ordered from him. 

They sprayed tear gas at the man and a soldier who tried to help the him, and beat the man with wooden planks, Haaretz reported.

The Bat Ayin settlers also threw stones at a Palestinian truck a week afterwards, and cut down 35 olive trees belonging to Palestinians in May 2014, spray-painting the words "Arabs are thieves" in the orchard. The damage was estimated at 30,000 shekels (about $7,700).

According to Israeli media, the prosecution asked the court to extend the remand of the three until the end of proceedings.
If 399 so called price tags incident occurred and none prosecuted , means 3 things 1- The Israeli police are very incompetent. 2- The Israeli prosecutors do not have the will to prosecute their own and whose action they tacitly approve of 3-The Israeli government encouraging and turning a blind eye.
29/04/2015 22:40
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