Settlers violently attack Palestinian-led hike near Jericho
Videos on social media show the settlers swinging wildly at the hikers, screaming in Hebrew and Arabic, saying “I’m going to break your hands - I’m going to break your heads”.
Colonial Israeli settlers attack Palestinians and foreigners in Al-Auja town near Jericho. pic.twitter.com/7l16m3iH2w— PALESTINE ONLINE 🇵🇸 (@OnlinePalEng) January 13, 2023
None of the walkers responded with violence despite the repeated attacks.
The group were walking a well-known trail near the town of al-Ouja, according to Palestinian news agency Wafa.
An Italian national in the group received a fracture on her arm from a blow by one of the settlers
Palestinian walking groups have grown in popularity in recent years, asserting a right to the land and promoting healthy pastimes while space continues to be restricted by the Israeli occupation.
The area around Jericho is rich with hiking paths, with valleys and streams that are regularly used by Palestinian locals and international tourists visiting the West Bank.
Expanding settlements are encroaching on traditional walkways in the Jordan Valley area and bringing Palestinian hikers in ever closer contact with violent settlers.
The settler men who attacked on Friday are occupants of a new outpost, according to reporting by Haaretz - and are often seen harassing and impeding Palestinian shepherds who use the land.
Illegal settler outposts in the West Bank have been hugely emboldened by promises from the new extreme-right Israeli government, who say they will approve legal status for the outposts in contravention of international law.