Israeli soldiers seen, joined settlers attacking Palestinians: NGO

One israeli rights group It said on Sunday that in 183 incidents of Jewish settler violence against Palestinians, Israeli forces did not intervene to protect Palestinians and at times actively engaged in attacks.

In the report, the Betselam rights group said it had documented a total of 451 settler attacks on Palestinians in the West Bank since early last year.

“Settlement attacks against Palestinians are a tactic employed by the Israeli apartheid regime, which seeks to advance and complete the abuse of greater Palestinian land,” it said.

Israel, which has occupied the West Bank Since 1967, rejects claims that its treatment of Palestinians equates to apartheid.

According to Butselm, in 183 incidents of settler violence, the army stood by or assisted the attackers.

As a result, it said, five Palestinians were killed and 22 arrested.

Israel’s security forces did not immediately respond to questions about Betsalem’s latest allegations.

Read more: HRW accuses Tel Aviv of ‘apartheid’ against Palestinians, Arab minorities

Betselam spokeswoman Dror Sadot said the group did not contact security forces because “we understand they do nothing about our allegations”.

According to the group, in five test cases in the West Bank, violent settlers occupied more than 2,800 hectares of land.

As an example, the group cited Maon Farm, which was illegally erected in the southern West Bank but with a sub-outpost now controlling some 264 hectares, including access by Palestinian residents of the area. Roads and pastures are included.

Jummah Ribi, a 48-year-old shepherd from the Palestinian community of al-Tuwani, told B’stelem that the settlers’ attacks were driving her away from the agriculture that supported her family.

He said that in 2018 the settlers attacked him severely.

“He broke my leg, and I had to spend two weeks in the hospital and continue treatment at home,” B’Stellem quoted him as saying.

“I had to sell most of my sheep to cover the cost of the treatment.” Nearly half a million Israelis have moved into West Bank settlements, which most of the international community considers illegal.

Some settler outpost, including Ma’on Farms, are also illegal under Israeli law, however, the government has been slow or reluctant to clear them.

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