Emboldened by promises of annexation, Israeli settler attacks soared in July

(Mosab Shawer - APA Images)

Yumna Patel

Mondoweiss  /  August 3, 2020 

According to data gathered by Mondoweiss, there were at least 25 reported incidents of Israeli settler violence against Palestinians since the unofficial July 1st deadline to annex the West Bank passed.

It has been one month since Israel’s unofficial July 1st deadline to annex the West Bank passed.

The media attention leading up to the date reached a fevered pitch by June 30th, as international condemnations rolled in, and US congress members began floating the idea of conditioning aid to Israel.

By the time July 1st rolled around, after weeks of intense build up, Israel had begun to backtrack, and eventually, talk of annexation seemed to fizzle out.

But while the world may have moved on from annexation, for the time being, the consequences of Israel’s promises are being felt on the ground in the West Bank, as reports of settler attacks on Palestinians and their property surged in July, as well as in June in the lead up to annexation.

Almost every day since July 1st has seen reports of settler attacks and incursions on Palestinian towns and villages across the West Bank.

Notably, a significant portion of the recorded incidents relate to settlers attempting to seize new pieces of land or establish new outposts in the West Bank.

According to data gathered by Mondoweiss from local Palestinian news reports, from July 1st to the 31st, there have been at least 25 reported incidents of Israeli settlers attempting to seize Palestinian land, setting up new outposts, attacking Palestinians, vandalizing Palestinian homes, mosques, and vehicles, and burning down Palestinian crops and agricultural lands.

Between June 30th and July 13th, the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) documented the injury of at least five Palestinians from settler attacks — including three Palestinians who were shot with live ammunition, one who was physically assaulted, and another who was bitten by a dog unleashed by settlers. From the 14th to the 27th of July, UN OCHA confirmed nine more attacks. 

The attacks have taken place across the territory, from Hebron to Jenin, though typically in rural Palestinian towns and villages that are located in close proximity to settlements.

Yumna Patel is the Palestine correspondent for Mondoweiss