Middle East Monitor / January 19, 2022
Jewish settlers, yesterday, raided and stole more than a dozen olive trees in Masafer Yatta, south of the West Bank city of Hebron/Al-Khalil, reported Wafa News Agency.
According to Fouad al-Imour, a local activist, a group of settlers cut the fence surrounding a 2-dunum plot of land and stole around 30 olive saplings.
The South Hebron Hills are located in Area C of the occupied West Bank.
The area is subject to Israeli control and Palestinian residents are often targeted by illegal settlers.
The UN Special Coordinator for the Middle East Peace Process, Tor Wennesland, noted in his press briefing last month, “Settler-related violence remains at alarmingly high levels, amid continued tensions over settlement expansion and the annual olive harvest season.”
He added that “since the harvest began on 4 October, some 3,000 olive trees have been damaged or have had their harvest stolen.
“Physical attacks on Palestinian farmers, volunteers and humanitarian staff have also been recorded, some reportedly taking place in the presence of Israeli Security Forces.”
According to the Israeli human rights movement, Peace Now, there are about 666,000 settlers, 145 large settlements and 140 outposts in the West Bank, including East Jerusalem. All are illegal under international law.