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settler violence

  • West Bank murder: Leaders fail to address nature of settler violence

    The murder of a Palestinian baby has provoked condemnation from Israeli leaders across the political spectrum. Yet the harsh rhetoric masks a consistent failure by the Israeli establishment to understand the endemic nature of this kind of violence. Friday morning's “price tag” arson attack in the West Bank village of Duma, which killed Palestinian baby Ali Saad Dawabsha and left his parents and brother in critical condition, has been labeled an act of terror by nearly all Israeli and Palestinian politicians alike. [tmwinpost] Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu called the arson “an act of terrorism in every respect,” and announced that he…

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  • Palestinian baby burned to death in West Bank arson attack

    Photos by Ahmad Al-Bazz, Oren Ziv / Activestills.org A one-and-a-half year old Palestinian baby was burned to death Friday morning in the West Bank village of Duma in an attack on his family's home allegedly by Israeli settlers. According to reports, two masked men arrived at two homes in Duma, near Nablus. They spray painted the words "revenge" and "long live the Messiah" in Hebrew, broke the windows of the homes and threw two firebombs inside. The attack killed Ali Saad Dawabsha, and wounded both his parents and four-year-old brother. According to Ma'an News Agency, the homes were located near the main…

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  • A vicious cycle of lawlessness in the West Bank

    The IDF has all but refused to fulfill its obligation to hold Israeli settlers accountable under the law and to protect Palestinians from them. By Eyal Hareuveni For nearly 50 years the Israeli army has been treating settler violence against Palestinians as a decree of fate, some sort of force majeure that trumps it in the territories otherwise under its control and responsibility. In other words, the army has dealt with the phenomenon without actually dealing with it. [tmwinpost] International law, however, is quite clear that the occupying power, the Israeli army in this case, has an obligation to preserve…

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  • Resource: Faced with settler violence, the IDF stands idly by

    A new report by human rights organization Yesh Din about how IDF soldiers act when offenses are committed by Israeli citizens against Palestinians in the West Bank. The phenomenon of "standing idly by" refers to incidents when soldiers witness violence by Israeli citizens against Palestinians and their property and do nothing to prevent the harm while the action is ongoing; refrain from detaining or arresting the perpetrators after the event; fail to secure the scene to allow the collection of evidence; or fail to testify about the event to the police. According to the provisions of international law as well…

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  • Who's afraid of Israeli hate crimes?

    What the government calls 'nationalist crimes' are not random acts of violence—they have a clear goal: dispossessing Palestinians of their land. By Yesh Din, written by Yossi Gurvitz From time to time, this country is shaken by a particularly severe wave of nationalistically-motivated hate crimes against Palestinians, often in the form of arson or desecration of a religious site. After each such incident, we are faced with the usual ritual: senior government or police officials stare into the cameras with a determined gaze; they call the acts unconscionable; they say they take the incident with a full measure of responsibility and severity; they…

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  • When the criminal justice system is subject to occupation law

    Instead of regular criminal proceedings against Israelis who commit crimes against Palestinians, the police cut corners using military administrative orders. By Ziv Stahl, written for Yesh Din Yesh Din's latest report, Mock Enforcement, takes a long, hard look at law enforcement vis-à-vis Israeli citizens who commit crimes against Palestinians in the occupied territories. Data collected for the report indicates that law enforcement in the West Bank is ineffectual, and that the absence of a functional system has led to solutions that circumvent the problem so as to maintain a facade of minimal public order in the West Bank. [tmwinpost] Instead…

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  • Diaspora Jews bring solidarity to south Hebron Hills

    Over 70 Jews from around the world headed to Susya last weekend, where they stood with the residents of the West Bank village under threat of demolition against displacement and settler violence.  It was part anti-occupation activism, part Jewish summer camp, part WWOOF and a little reminiscent of young foreigners coming to volunteer on a kibbutz. Over 70 Jews in their 20s and 30s, mostly from English-speaking countries, spent last Friday and Saturday in the impoverished Palestinian village of Khirbet Susya, whose residents are living under a looming threat of a second forced displacement from their homes. The first time…

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  • A court of non-convictions when the victim is Palestinian

    When Israelis are accused of victimizing Palestinians, nearly 25% of convictions are simply thrown out — to avoid tarring the criminal with a criminal record. By Yossi Gurvitz, written for Yesh Din Every year Yesh Din publishes data about police investigative failures regarding crimes carried out by Israelis against Palestinians in the West Bank. They are usually quite similar: the police fails to investigate approximately 85 percent of complaints by Palestinians who report being harmed by Israelis. The rate becomes much higher when it comes to the destruction of Palestinian trees by Israeli civilians: that's when the police failure rate…

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  • Perpetrator unknown: The systemic failure to investigate settler violence

    With such an overwhelming number of investigations into Israeli citizens attacking Palestinians in the West Bank closed due to 'perpetrator unknown,' one has to wonder why the police have such a hard time finding suspects. By Yossi Gurvitz, written for Yesh Din At the center of a new Yesh Din report, Mock Enforcement, is a depressing piece of data: the Israel Police’s fail in 85.3 percent of investigations into Israelis who harm Palestinians in the West Bank. The report, which which deals with Israel's continued failure to enforce the law on Israeli civilians in the West Bank, examined 996 cases closed by…

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  • Violent settlers cleared despite smoking gun (literally)

    When the prosecution closes a case for lack of evidence, despite the abundance thereof, we realize how seriously it takes its role. By Yesh Din, written by Yossi Gurvitz The location was Qusra, a village in the Shiloh Valley; the date, September 16, 2011. Fathallah Mahmoud Muhammad Abu Rhoda went out with his three sons to pick figs. A short while after reaching their land, they noticed about 10 Israeli civilians standing around their water hole. The Palestinians demanded the Israelis leave the place; the interlopers refused. The residents of Qusra — a village that has already proven it can…

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  • ‘Price tag’ settler argues in court that revenge isn’t a crime

    You would think that sentencing a group of Israelis for setting fire to a Palestinian cafe is a positive development. But a closer look shows that the culture of minimizing the seriousness of price tag attacks is alive and strong.  Were people's lives and livelihoods not at stake, it would have been an almost sublime piece of parody. During the trial of four teenage Israeli settlers who set fire to a Palestinian-owned cafe in the West Bank town of Dura, which concluded on Monday, the defendants' attorneys - as reported by Ynet - brought forth the claim that because the arson was…

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  • WATCH: Masked settlers throw stones at Israeli activists

    Incident comes one week after six-year-old girl was wounded by stone-throwing in the exact same location. Settlers from the illegal outpost Havat Maon in the southern West Bank hurled rocks at a group of Israeli activists on Saturday, just one week after a six-year old Palestinian girl was attacked and wounded in her head in the exact same place. Three settlers, who appear to be quite young, used slingshots to hurl stones at the group of activists. No one was hurt in the incident. In the video, you can hear Guy, a documentarian of the occupation and veteran activist from Ta'ayush,…

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  • Settlers attack, wound six-year-old Palestinian girl

    West Bank settlers attacked a six-year-old Palestinian girl with rocks in the South Hebron Hills on Saturday, wounding her in the head, according to Israeli human rights NGO B'Tselem. The girl was wounded after a group of masked settlers threw rocks at her near the entrance to the illegal outpost of Havat Maon, said B'Tselem. She was also lightly injured in her leg as she attempted to flee. B'Tselem reported that Israeli police took the girl and her father to a local station to file a complaint, and that she was treated at a local clinic for her wounds. The…

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