Stone-throwing Israeli settlers attack Palestinian village

·1 min read
Israeli soldiers stand next to cars that the Palestinian owners said had their tires slashed and were spray painted with the Star of David and Hebrew by Jewish settlers, in the village of Qira near the West Bank town of Salfit, Sunday, Jan 23, 2022. (AP Photo/Majdi Mohammed) (ASSOCIATED PRESS)

JERUSALEM (AP) — Israeli settlers drove through a Palestinian village in the occupied West Bank on Monday, throwing rocks through the windows of vehicles and businesses and injuring a teenager, a Palestinian official said.

It was the latest in a series of settler attacks in recent months. On Friday, settlers attacked Palestinians and Israeli peace activists in the West Bank and set a car on fire. Last month, a settler was shot and killed by a Palestinian gunman, setting off revenge attacks.

The Israeli military confirmed the incident on Monday, saying the Israelis had caused “significant damage" and that police have opened an investigation.

Ghassan Daghlas, a Palestinian Authority official, said a Palestinian teenager was taken to the hospital after being struck in the head by a stone. He said the teenager was “lightly wounded."

Israeli Defense Minister Benny Gantz released a statement saying anyone who throws stones or lights cars on fire “is a terrorist and will be treated as such.”

Israeli officials have repeatedly vowed to take action against settler violence in recent months. Palestinians and Israeli rights groups say the army rarely intervenes and often sides with the settlers.

Nearly 500,000 Israeli settlers live in 130 settlement and dozens of unauthorized outposts across the occupied West Bank. The Palestinians view the settlements as the main obstacle to resolving the conflict. Most countries view settlements as a violation of international law.

Israel captured the West Bank in the 1967 war and the Palestinians want it to form the main part of their future state. Israel considers the West Bank to be the biblical and historical heartland of the Jewish people. There have been no substantive peace talks in over a decade.