Israeli settlers destroy olive trees in Palestinian community

Israeli settlers destroy olive trees in Palestinian community
Israeli settlers destroyed at least 70 olive trees and let loose a herd of sheep onto Palestinian farmland.
2 min read
09 December, 2021
Palestinians in Masafer Yatta are subjected to routine Israeli harassment [Getty]

Israeli settlers on Wednesday destroyed dozens of Palestinian olive trees and let loose a herd sheep onto farmland in a village near the occupied city of Hebron.

Dozens of Israelis from the nearby settlement of Mitzpe Yair slashed around 70 olive trees in the Khillit Al-Dabe village of Masafer Yatta, Fouad Al-Imour, a local activist, told the Palestinian Authority's Wafa news agency. 

The trees were owned by a local Palestinian resident.

More crops were destroyed after the settlers let loose their herd of sheep onto the Palestinian farmland.

Settlements are classed as illegal under international law.

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The South Hebron Hills are located in Area C of the occupied West Bank. 

The area is subjected to Israeli control and Palestinian residents are often targeted by illegal settlers. 

Last week, settlers let loose a herd of sheep on Palestinian land in the Tuba village in Masafer Yatta to destroy crops. Settlers then attacked farmers under the eye of Israeli soldiers, reports said.

A Palestinian toddler was hospitalised after Israeli settlers attacked the village of Al-Mufaqarah in September. 

Hebron is known to be an exceptionally hostile environment for Palestinian residents, due to the high concentration of settlers in the city.

Palestinians in Hebron are routinely harassed by Israeli settlers and soldiers. Their homes are subject to demolition to make way for new Israeli settlements, and olive trees are uprooted.

Israel has occupied the West Bank illegally since 1967 and commits various abuses against Palestinian civilians, human rights groups say.

More than 600,000 Jewish Israelis live in settlements in the occupied West Bank and East Jerusalem, in constructions deemed illegal under international law.

In April, the UN raised alarm over a marked upsurge in settler violence against Palestinians in the occupied West Bank, with assaults and property destruction occurring in "an atmosphere of impunity".