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Gangs of masked, armed settler-colonists, at times accompanied by dogs, violently attacked Palestinians this week throughout the Occupied Territories, usually while the Israeli army was present and not intervening; another wave of demolitions in the South Hebron Hills and the Palestinian Jordan Valley, including the dwelling tent of Harun Abu ‘Aram, recently shot in his neck when resisting a confiscation of a generator in his village, Al-Rakeez; the occupation forces also demolished again, for the fourth time, the entire community of Humsa, in the Palestinian Jordan Valley
photo: Civil Administration and army force a Palestinian family to dismantle its tent in the South Hebron Hills, Saturday, February 13, 2021
The settler-colonists of ‘Susya’ now attack their Palestinian neighbors in daylight and in the presence of Israeli soldiers. On Thursday morning (February 11), settler-colonists attacked a Palestinian shepherdess from Susya grazing in her family’s land, inside an area supposedly out of bounds for Israelis. Palestinian villagers and activists arrived and were also stoned, while the assailants signaled the soldier at the guard post to keep her distance so they could continue their attack. The Palestinian shepherdess and an activist were injured by the stones. Army forces arrived but allowed the assailants to leave unhindered.
On Friday two settler-colonists, one of whom had taken part in the attack a day earlier, came to the Wadi Jheish community, close to Samu’a in Area B. The settler-colonsits were armed and released their dog from its leash, threatening the inhabitants with their weapons. Only after numerous villagers from the area arrived, did they finally leave.
On the other hand, on Tuesday, February 9, in Tawane village, the occupation forces arrested one of the Palestinians who had been attacked last Saturday by settler-colonists on the lands of Haruba. He was held in custody without any evidence against him until Sunday, February 14. During his session at the military court, activists held a protest demonstration opposite the court in the Ofer base.
Occupation forces again issued demolition orders at Rakeez on Monday, and came to conduct another wave of destruction on Wednesday, beginning with confiscation of a tin outhouse placed in Thawamin, after which they demolished and confiscated the remains of a seasonal tent north-east of the Susya army camp. From there the forces proceeded to Rakeez where they demolished and confiscated two tents, one of which was had served assemblies after the criminal shooting of Harun Abu ‘Aram, and another serving Harun’s family for dwelling, and an outhouse. Later they confiscated and demolished in Umm Al Kheir and at Khalat Furun. On Friday and Saturday, the soldiers forced Palestinians to dismantle a seasonal tent that serves them around Tha’ale.
On Wednesday, settler-colonists of ‘Otniel” sent the army to chase away Palestinian shepherds from the lands of Abu Gghil. The Palestinians insisted they had a right to graze on their own lands, based on a court ruling, but the officer on the ground said he didn’t care and began to arrest two of the Palestinians. The arrival of activists who were nearby prevented this arrest.
During the week, constant presence of activists took place in the South Hebron Hills, documenting and coping along with the local inhabitants a variety of the occupation’s harassment methods – whether by settler-colonists or their emissaries, soldiers and officials of the Civil Administration. On Friday a protest took place in Rakeez against the shooting of Harun and the continued harassment of the village by the occupation forces. On Saturday activists accompanied shepherds close to Susya, and apparently their presence prevented soldiers and settler-colonists who came there from chasing away the flocks.
Palestinian Jordan Valley and West Bank Hill Range
In the West Bank Hill Range activists are confronting the daily incursion of settler-colonists and their flocks into Palestinians’ tended fields around Tayibe Junction and Deir Jarayer. The activists try to chase away the invading flocks, sometimes successfully, but do not manage to make the police or army act against the invaders and prevent intended damages to the crops. On Friday, after an activist was beaten by one of the invading settler-colonists, a policeman agreed to accept his complaint…
In the northern Palestinian Jordan Valley, settler-colonists and soldiers doing their bidding violently steal the grazing grounds of the local inhabitants. On Sunday the army arrested a Farisiya shepherd at the whim of a local settler-colonist, and the Palestinian was only released after hours and a lawyer’s intervention. Activists accompanying shepherds from Farisiya on Tuesday documented settler-colonists threatening the shepherds and setting their dog at their flock. Soldiers arriving completed the expulsion of the shepherds. Accompanying shepherds from En Al Hilwa the same day went unhampered.
On Saturday activists dismantled a fence erected by settler-colonists around ‘Maskiot’ in order to prevent Palestinian access to the grazing grounds. In Fasail, in the central Palestinian Jordan Valley, shepherds reported that the settler-colonists of the new outpost near En Rashash prevent their access to grazing grounds. Accompanying shepherds near Auja in the southern Palestinian Jordan Valley went unhampered this week.
On Monday, February 8, the occupation forces returned to Humsa in the northern Palestinian Jordan Valley and demolished the entire village for the fourth time in recent months. This time, they demolished 16 structures, 13 of them purchased by donors and given as a humanitarian answer to the two demolition operations that took place on February 1 and 3, during which 46 structures were demolished or confiscated. The forces also destroyed 4 structures that day including a water hole and two dwellings at Yarza, and on Wednesday another 3 structures were demolished in Jiftlik, a water hole near Rashash, and another structure at Marj Na’aja at the central Palestinian Jordan Valley. Activists came to Humsa on Tuesday to look into the needs of the community and begin work on restoring it.
On Friday, at the weekly demonstration in Salfit protesting the erection of a new outpost 3 months ago west of the town, soldiers dispersed the protesters with teargas. Several people were reportedly hurt. Closeby, during the week, again 30 olive trees were vandalized on the lands of Kufr A-Dik, near the settler-colony ‘Bruchin’.
Throughout the Occupied Territories and in Jerusalem
During the week, it was reported that armed settler-colonists from the outpost of ‘Avnei Hefetz’ attacked Palestinian farmers from Shufa village (Tul Karm district) on their own lands, and chased them away. On Saturday a gang of settler-colonists from ‘Yitzhar’ were reported invading the Palestinian village of Asira A-Qabiliya (Nablus district), and soldiers escorting them fired teargas and rubber ammunition at Palestinians trying to resist this invasion. It was also reported that settler-colonists of the outpost of ‘Esh Qodesh’ entered Qussra village (Nablus district), throwing stones at homes and setting a vehicle on fire.
On Friday activists came to the lands of Bourin village (Nablus district) to plant trees in a joint action with the villagers who have suffered extensive settler-colonist violence and vandalization of olive trees. The army forces arriving there at the bidding of settler-colonists from a nearby outpost tried to violently chase away the activists relying on a commander’s edict that is not relevant to this area. The soldiers fired stun grenades and attacked an activist, but the activists insisted and managed to complete the planting.
In Jerusalem on Tuesday, a protest vigil took place opposite the district court as the appeal session took place there, where inhabitants of the Sheikh Jarrah neighborhood contested the court ruling instructing their eviction and giving over their homes to settler-colonists. The same day, the occupation forces demolished a house in Sheikh Jarrah.
The weekly protest in Sheikh Jarrah takes place every Friday. The residents of Sheikh Jarrah are protesting their violent evictions from their homes, the taking over of the neighborhood by the settlers, and the Judaization of East Jerusalem. They call upon each and every person who supports their struggle to join them.
We will meet at the Sheikh Jarrah Garden, Nablus Road and Dahlmann St. at at 3 p.m