Jewish settlers torched this morning fields planted with olive trees in the town of Huwarra, near the northern West Bank city of Nablus, according to the Palestinian news agency WAFA.
Local activist Ghassan Daghlas told WAFA that a group of Jewish settlers set fire to dozens of olive trees, causing extensive damage to crops that are a main source of income to thousands of Palestinian families.
Daghlas, who monitors settlers and settlement activities in the north of the West Bank, said there was recently a surge in settlers’ attacks against Palestinian civilians and property in the Nablus area, and in their efforts to grab as much Palestinian land as possible to expand their settlements including the recent setting up of mobile homes on Palestinian-owned land in the town of Assira al-Shamaliya, north of Nablus.
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