Jewish settlers today planted trees in a Palestinian-owned land in an area south of the southern West Bank city of Bethlehem in a prelude to taking it over, according to Palestinian news agency WAFA.
Hasan Breijieh, director of the Bethlehem office of the Wall and Settlements Resistance Commission, told WAFA that a number of Jewish settlers planted olive trees in a land owned by Zeinab Abu Sneineh, in an area near the village of Irtas. This step is usually a prelude to seizing the land.
Breijieh said the Israeli army had previously seized land in the same area and considered it state-owned.
Meanwhile, Israeli army bulldozers razed land south of Bethlehem located between the illegal settlements of Migdal Oz and Ifrat, Breijieh added.
Settler violence against Palestinians and their property is routine in the West Bank and is rarely prosecuted by Israeli authorities.
“Jewish settler violence should not be analyzed separately from the violence meted out by the Israeli army, but seen within the larger context of the violent Zionist ideology that governs Israeli society entirely,” wrote Palestinian author and editor of The Palestine Chronicle, Ramzy Baroud.
“Settler violence has long since become part of Palestinians’ daily life under occupation,” according to the Human Rights Group B’tselem. “Israeli security forces enable these actions, which result in Palestinian casualties – injuries and fatalities – as well as damage to land and property. In some cases, they even serve as an armed escort, or even join in the attacks”.
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.
Source: The Palestine Chronicle