Saturday, February 24, 2024

Israeli army-settler rampage continues in West Bank, hand in hand with genocide in Gaza

Several incidents of killings, vandalism, demolition and encroachments were reported in last 24 hours, across different parts of the West Bank.

Israeli forces on Monday demolished a cave and bulldozed an agricultural road in the village of Artas, south of Bethlehem.

“The occupation army force accompanied by three large bulldozers stormed Abu Zeid mountain area, south of Artas, demolished a cave called ‘Nimer’ and bulldozed an agricultural road built by the village council in order for citizens to access their lands,” said Hassan Barijiyah, the director of the Office of the Wall and Settlement Resistance Commission in Bethlehem.

In another incident, Israeli settlers tried to steal dozens of sheep from a Palestinian man in the area of Khallet Hamad in the northern Jordan Valley.

Human rights activist Arif Daraghmeh told Wafa Agency that the settlers backed by the army stole about 40 sheep belonging to local resident Hamid Rizq Abu Al-Zeit, but the residents intervened and collectively resisted the move. 

In the town of Aqraba, south of the northern West Bank city of Nablus, Israeli settlers attacked Palestinian farmers and olive pickers, according to local sources. They said a large group of settlers attacked the olive pickers and fired gunshots to intimidate them and force them to leave their lands.

The Israeli occupation forces and settlers in compliance have carried out a total of 333 attacks against olive pickers since the start of the season in the first week of last October, according to the Wall and Settlement Resistance Commission.

A two-storey house in the town of Bani Naim, owned by a Palestinian family, east of the southern West Bank city of Hebron, was demolished by the army.

The soldiers raided the area where the house, owned by a local resident and was ready to move into, and demolished it under the pretext it was built without a permit.

It is estimated that the military and the settler mobs have prevented Palestinians from accessing an area of 500,000 dunums (1 dunum = 1,000 square metres) of their lands, including 200,000 dunums caught between settlement colonies, and 300,000 dunums isolated behind the apartheid wall.

On the other hand, the Gaza health ministry said 32 Palestinians were killed in Khan Younis overnight. The armed wing of Hamas said it had hit several Israeli tanks with rockets and fired mortars at Israeli forces.

Hamas fighters also said that fighting was fierce in Shejaia, east of the centre of Gaza City, the northwestern Sheikh Radwan district and Jabalia further north.

In central Gaza, where Israel told people to move on Monday towards “known shelters in the Deir al-Balah area,” health officials said the Shuhada Al-Aqsa hospital had received 40 dead.

Since Oct 7. at least 18,205 Palestinians have been killed in Gaza and 49,645 wounded, according to the Gaza health ministry. The toll no longer includes northern Gaza and many people there and elsewhere remain trapped under rubble.

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