Geneva(In Palestine Today)- Violence by Israeli settlers against Palestinian civilians in the occupied West Bank has risen markedly in recent months, with assaults and property destruction occurring in an atmosphere of impunity, UN human rights experts said today.
“We note that, in 2020, the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) documented 771 incidents of settler violence causing injury to 133 Palestinians and damaging 9,646 trees and 184 vehicles mostly in the areas of Hebron, Jerusalem, Nablus and Ramallah,” the experts said. “Already, during the first three months of 2021, more than 210 settler violent incidents were recorded, with one Palestinian fatality. We call upon the Israeli military and police to investigate and prosecute these violent acts with vigor and resolve.”
The experts said settler violence was predominantly ideologically motivated and primarily designed to take over land but also to intimidate and terrorize Palestinians. The violence and intimidation often prevents Palestinians from accessing and cultivating their land, and creates a coercive environment pressuring Palestinians to stay away from certain areas or even move.