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EU representative: ‘Settler violence must stop’

March 4, 2023 at 10:33 am

Delegations of European ambassadors and consuls and European Union Representative in West Bank and Gaza Sven Kuehn von Burgsdorff visit Palestinians subjected to the violence of Jewish settlers in Nablus, West Bank on March 03, 2023. [Issam Rimawi – Anadolu Agency]

The representative of the European Union (EU) in Palestine, Sven Kuhn von Burgsdorff, announced on Friday during his visit to the town of Huwara, south of Nablus, as the head of a delegation that included ambassadors and diplomats, that the EU: “Will continue to demand directly the trial and accountability of those who carried out the settler attacks on the town. Settler violence must stop.”

During the visit, the delegation, comprising representatives of the EU countries in Palestine and high-ranking diplomats from about 20 countries, briefed the Israeli Information Centre for Human Rights in the Occupied Territories (B’Tselem) about the repercussions of the aggression launched by settlers on the town, where several homes and facilities that were burned down by settlers were examined. They also listened to Palestinian testimonies about the attacks on them and their properties.

During the delegation’s visit, extremist Knesset member Zvi Sukkot stormed the town of Hawara, attempting to interrupt the conversation using a loudspeaker.

WATCH: Israel army watch as settlers set fire to Palestinian home

Burgsdorff condemned settler attacks on towns and villages south of Nablus, stating: “We made extensive contacts to stop what is happening on the ground, and unfortunately, this intervention was late.” He added that his team would continue its efforts to stop these incidents and prevent such attacks against Palestinians.

The EU representative also demanded compensation for the victims of these attacks and expressed that his delegation’s visit: “Is a message of solidarity from the international community with the people of Hawara and neighbouring villages.”

In turn, B’Tselem General Director Hagai El-Ad said that the settlers’ attacks are being sponsored by the Israeli government, as the government gives them immunity to continue their attacks, whether in Hawara or other areas in the occupied Palestinian territories.

The head of the Hawara municipality, Moeen Dmaidi, said that the town witnessed a series of ongoing attacks, which led to the great destruction of properties and facilities, in addition to the psychological and health impact on the citizens. He conveyed his hope that protection would be provided to the citizens of Hawara, and neighbouring villages, and that they would witness serious steps on the ground in this regard.

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Dmaidi added that what Hawara witnessed over the course of two days of attacks was unprecedented and took place under the protection of the Israeli occupation army.

The delegation also visited the village of Za’tara, south of Nablus, and offered condolences to the family of martyr and Palestinian aid worker Sameh Aktash, who was killed in a settlers’ attack last Sunday.

Burgsdorff noted that the death of Aktash was a tragic event, addressing the children of the martyr: “Be proud of what your father did, and you must continue to preserve his legacy and the legacy of the family.”

Hundreds of heavily armed terrorist settlers launched an attack on the town of Huwara, the village of Za’tara, and several villages south of Nablus last Sunday night with the protection of the Israeli occupation forces. The attack resulted in the death of Aktash, the injury of others, the burning of dozens of homes and vehicles and the destruction of properties.

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