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Armed Israeli settlers raid Palestinian village, throw rocks at locals

Nov. 30, 2017 4:33 P.M. (Updated: Dec. 1, 2017 2:10 P.M.)
Israeli settlers throwing rocks as Israeli forces look on (File)
NABLUS (Ma'an) -- At least eight Palestinians were injured on Thursday after Israeli settlers threw rocks at them near the village of Asira al-Qibliya, south of Nablus in the northern occupied West Bank

Hafeth Saleh, head of the village council in Asira al-Qibliya, told Ma’an that more than 50 armed Israeli settlers from the nearby illegal Yitzhar settlement attacked the eastern area of the village, throwing rocks at villagers and opening fire in the air before clashes erupted between Palestinians and the settlers.

Saleh added that Israeli forces immediately intervened and fired tear gas and stun grenades at villagers, causing several of them to suffer from severe tear-gas inhalation.

An Israeli army spokesperson told Ma’n they were looking into reports.

The incident took place shortly after Israeli settlers shot and killed a Palestinian farmer in the nearby village of Qusra as he was farming on his land.

An upwards of some 600,000 Israeli settlers reside in occupied Palestinian territory in violation of international law. The international community has repeatedly called their presence and rising population the main impediment to potential peace in the region.

Palestinian activists and rights groups have long accused Israel of fostering a “culture of impunity” for Israeli settlers and soldiers committing violent acts against Palestinians.

While the hundreds of thousands of Israeli settlers are permitted to carry guns, and are rarely held accountable for stone throwing or similar attacks, Palestinians face up to 20 years in prison for throwing stones where intent to harm could be proven, and 10 years where it could not.

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