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Israeli settlers assault Palestinian photojournalist near Ramallah

Feb. 7, 2017 7:59 P.M. (Updated: Feb. 8, 2017 3:52 P.M.)
RAMALLAH (Ma'an) -- At least five Israeli settlers assaulted a Palestinian photojournalist with rocks and batons while he was driving on a road near the illegal Israeli settlement of Ofra in the occupied West Bank district of Ramallah on Tuesday afternoon.

According to locals, after fleeing the scene Zaher Abu Hussein was taken to the Ramallah Governmental Hospital for treatment, where his injuries were reported as moderate.

Abu Hussein’s vehicle was also damaged in the assault.

Between 500,000 and 600,000 Israelis live in Jewish-only settlements across occupied East Jerusalem and the West Bank in violation of international law, with recent announcements of settlement expansion provoking condemnation from the international community.

Israel’s parliament, the Knesset, passed into law the contested outpost “Regularization bill” in a late night vote Monday, granting official Israeli governmental recognition to more than a dozen illegal settlement outposts in the occupied West Bank established on private Palestinian lands, which was denounced as a "war crime" and an act of colonization.

According to the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA), there were a total of 221 reported settler attacks against Palestinians and their properties in the West Bank and occupied East Jerusalem in 2015, and 107 in 2016.

The majority of settler attacks committed against Palestinians are met with impunity, with Israelis rarely facing consequences for such attacks.

Meanwhile, Palestinian journalists in the occupied territory have faced detention, as well as physical assault and injury at the hands of Israeli forces amid a crackdown on freedom of expression by the Israeli state.
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