Extremist Jewish settlers uprooted hundreds of grape trees belonging to Palestinian farmers, near Bethlehem in the occupied West Bank, eyewitnesses said.
Local sources reported that Jewish settlers on Saturday broke into a grape-planted grove belonging to a Palestinian farmer from the village of al-Khader, before proceeding to chop off about 200 trees there.
This was the second attack by settlers on the village since Friday when another group of Jewish settlers forced their way into the farm of Palestinian Naser Ismail Marzouq and uprooted at least 300 grape trees.
Settler violence is commonplace across the occupied West Bank and is rarely prosecuted by Israeli authorities as the Palestinian Authority has no jurisdiction over Jewish settlers.
Armed settlers attack Palestinian farmers throughout the West Bank, often under the protection of the Israeli army. One of their main missions is to uproot Palestinian trees and set orchards ablaze in an attempt to force Palestinians to leave, as a first step before stealing the land and building more illegal settlements, wrote Ramzy Baroud and Romana Rubeo in a recent article.
Israel shows no respect for Palestine and its people. The colonial Zionist state is destroying local habitats, animals and species that are unique to the region, Baroud and Rubeo added.
Source: Palestine Chronicle