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Illegal Israeli settlers attack Palestinian village in West Bank

May 22, 2024 at 6:06 pm

Israeli settlers attack Palestinian farmers picking olives in the village of Burin, south of the northern West Bank city of Nablus, on October 2019

Illegal Israeli settlers attacked a Palestinian village in the northern Occupied West Bank on Wednesday and set fire to farmlands, according to witnesses, Anadolu Agency reports.

Illegal settlers attacked with gunfire and rocks Palestinian residents in the village of Asira Al-Qibliya near Nablus and set ablaze farmlands there, witnesses said.

Palestinian villagers resisted the attackers, triggering clashes between the two sides, they added.

No information was yet available about injuries or damage.

The settler attack followed an order by Israeli Defence Minister, Yoav Gallant, early Wednesday to cancel a decision to dismantle three illegal outposts in the northern West Bank.

Gallant said his order was in line with a bill passed by the Knesset (Israel’s parliament) last year that allowed illegal Israeli settlers to resettle in four outposts evacuated in 2005 under former Prime Minister Ariel Sharon’s disengagement plan from the Gaza Strip.

Under the disengagement plan, more than 9,000 settlers were removed from 21 illegal settlements in Gaza and the northern West Bank.

The United Nations considers Israeli settlement activity illegal and says it undermines the internationally agreed two-state solution.

Estimates indicate that about 700,000 illegal settlers are living in 164 settlements and 116 outposts in the Occupied West Bank.

Tensions have been running high across the West Bank since Israel launched a deadly military offensive against the Gaza Strip, where more than 35,700 people have been killed following a Hamas attack on 7 October, 2023.

At least 510 Palestinians have since been killed and around 5,000 others injured by Israeli army fire in the Occupied Territory, according to the Ministry of Health.

READ: Israel military permits the return of Israelis to settlements evacuated in 2005