Nearly 230 olive trees were destroyed earlier this week in the northern West Bank. According to B’Tselem, an Israeli NGO that documents human rights violations in the occupied territories, the trees belonged to the Radwan family from the village Azzoun, and were planted no more than five years ago.
The family began harvesting the trees, which lie near the junction of Karnei Shomron and the village Kufr Latif, just yesterday, leading them to suspect that they were destroyed shortly thereafter or during the early hours of the morning.
The destruction comes at the height of the tense olive harvest season, which has seen a dramatic rise in settler attacks against Palestinians and their olive trees. According to Rabbis for Human Rights, nearly 2,000 Palestinian olive trees have been destroyed in recent months in areas the Israeli army knows to be flash points.
According to Yesh Din, between 2005 and 2013 just 8.5 percent of investigation files ended in the indictment of Israelis suspected of harming Palestinians and their property. In the vast majority of cases, the investigators failed to locate the offenders or to collect sufficient evidence for prosecution. Thus, the chances that the police will catch the vandals is nearly zero.
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