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200 Israeli settlers attack Palestinian village with firebombs

Oct. 18, 2015 10:34 A.M. (Updated: Oct. 19, 2015 3:58 P.M.)
A Palestinian stands next to a graffiti reading in Hebrew "Revenge" as he looks at the damage after a house was set on fire by suspected Jewish settlers in the West Bank village of Duma on July 31, 2015 (AFP/Jaafar Ashtiyeh)
HEBRON (Ma’an) -- More than 200 Israeli settlers attacked the Palestinian villages of Wad al-Haseen and Wad al-Nasara near the illegal Israeli settlement of Kiryat Arba overnight in the eastern Hebron district of the occupied southern West Bank, locals and medics said.

During the attack, Israeli settlers threw stones and firebombs at Palestinian homes and injured at least three people, two of which were minors, while Israeli forces later shot and injured one Palestinian with live fire.

An Israeli army spokesperson said she did not have reports of any injuries with live fire.

The spokesperson said clashes between Palestinians and Israelis broke out in the area, after which Israeli forces "arrived at the scene anddispersedthe clashes using riot dispersal means."

Kayed Daana, one of the residents whose home was attacked told Ma’an that dozens of Israeli settlers attacked her neighborhood and injured at least three of her neighbors who have been identified as 40-year-old Imad and two minors, Abdullah, 13, and Muhammad, 17.

Muhammad's injuries were the most serious of the three, as he was hit in the chest with one of the fire bombs, medics said.

Daana told Ma'an that she would like to urge the International Red Cross and others in the international community intervene against Israeli violations and attacks on Palestinians.

Bassam al-Jabri, one of the residents, said he saw the attacking Israeli settlers cutting the blockade fence that separates the illegal Israeli settlement of Kiryat Arab from nearby Palestinian homes, while under the protection of the Israeli troops before they attacked his neighborhood with fire bombs.

Al-Jabri said his house was one of those set ablaze, but that he and his neighbors were able to put the fire out before the fire was able to damage his whole home.

During the attacks, Palestinian villagers fled to their local mosques and used the mosque amplifier to call for help from neighboring Palestinian villages and communities, who responded to their calls.

Israeli forces then got involved, shooting tear gas at Palestinians who showed up to help.

Community member Farid al-Razim, told Ma’an that villagers in his area were attacked by Israeli settlers with firebombs, while Israeli forces were shooting tear gas, and that one of the Palestinians from a neighboring village who had come to help was shot and injured with live fire.

While relations between Palestinian residents and Israeli settlers in the occupied West Bank are normally tense, thesituation has been significantly deteriorating since settlers’ caught fire a home belonging to the Duwabsha family in Nablus on July 31.

An 18-month-old toddler was burned alive during the attack, while his mother and father succumbed to their burn wounds while being treated at separate hospitals. The family's four-year-old son is the only remaining survivor of the attack.

On Oct. 1, suspected Palestinians shot and killed Eitam and Naama Henkin, two settlers who were driving between the illegal settlements of Itamar and Elon More in an area near Huwwara in Nablus.

Their four children, aged between four months and nine years, were found unharmed in the back of the car.

It is speculated that the shootings were a revenge attack on Israeli settlers, following months of increased restrictions at the Al-Aqsa Mosque compound and calls from right-wing Jewish groups, urging their supporters to visit the compound, which is venerated by Jews as the Temple Mount.

Following the shooting, hundreds of Israeli settlers rioted across the occupied West Bank, with multiple attacks reported on Palestinian homes and vehicles.

Palestinian towns and villages in the Nablus area are surrounded by Israeli settlements and outposts, many of which are protected by the Israeli military and have gained notoriety for being comprised of the most extremist settlers.

The Palestinian government has no jurisdiction over Israelis in the West Bank, and violent acts carried out by Israeli settlers often occur in the presence of Israeli military forces who rarely act to protect Palestinian residents.

Palestinians are therefore left to fend for themselves as few options for their personal security remain.

While Israeli forces will detain a Palestinian in the occupied West Bank for possessing a knife or gun, Israelis living in the same area are legally able to carry such weapons.

Rights groups have criticized Israel for implementing different legal systems for Palestinians and Israeli settlers living in the same area.

Such practices, they say, protect the expansion of settlements while systematically removing the ability for Palestinians to move freely throughout the occupied territory.
Yenta / Lithuania
A group of about 30 Israeli Jews, who travelled overnight to Joseph’s Tomb in the West Bank , was attacked by Palestinians. Six were wounded and one of their cars was destroyed.
18/10/2015 10:57
olivia / usa
so it's wrong when jews do it, but perfectly reasonable when Arabs do it? maan, do u seriously not see the double standard here?
18/10/2015 13:14
Brian Cohen / Israel
Excuse me if we're a little dubious about this report. Palestinians are famous for having cameras everywhere, but in this case when there is a MASSIVE alleged assault by 200 settlers, there's not a single picture? And the word "alleged" is noticeably missing from this article.
18/10/2015 15:22
Joe Fattal / USA
Between the blaze at Joseph Tomb and the attack by settlers with firebombs there is but two groups responsible for both, the settlers and the Israeli forces that coordinate to set both places on fire.
18/10/2015 16:39
for densa in lithuania / what squat is that?
they are requires to coordinate with Palestinians security...they instead broke in---got it stupid?
18/10/2015 17:45
Colin Wright / USA
"...A group of about 30 Israeli Jews, who travelled overnight to Joseph’s Tomb in the West Bank , was attacked by Palestinians. Six were wounded and one of their cars was destroyed..." Ah. Did they have visas from the PA, or were they 'infiltrators'?
19/10/2015 20:00
Colin Wright / USA
To Brain: '...but in this case when there is a MASSIVE alleged assault by 200 settlers, there's not a single picture?...' Well, you folks ARE famous for smashing cameras.
19/10/2015 20:06
Felixio / USA
Maybe abuses happen by both parties, but no doubt who has the stronger and massive army and repressive gear and knows how to use it knowing that the international community aint going to say much.
19/10/2015 21:29
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