Settlers Set Palestinian-Owned House on Fire in Hebron

HEBRON, May 31, 2015 (WAFA) – Israeli settlers on Sunday set a Palestinian-owned house on fire in the city of Hebron, partially burning the exterior of the house, according to local activist.

Coordinator of the Anti-Settlement Committee in Hebron, Rateb Jabour, said a group of settlers broke into the neighborhood of Tal Rmedeh in Hebron in the early morning, before they proceeded to pelt Molotov cocktails and stones at the house of Imad Abu Shamsia, an anti-settlement activist.

The outer walls of the house were burnt, yet no casualties were reported in the act.

Jewish settlers have repeatedly attacked Palestinian property and worship places. Settler violence includes property and mosque arson, stone-throwing, uprooting of crops and olive trees, attacks on vulnerable homes, among others.

According to the Israeli human rights group B’Tselem, Israeli security forces do not always deploy in advance to protect Palestinians from settler violence, even when such violence could be anticipated. “In some cases, rather than restricting violent settlers, Israeli security forces impose restrictions on the Palestinians.”

As the occupying power in the West Bank, Israel is obligated to maintain public order and ensure the safety of the Palestinians in the West Bank, who are classified a protected population in international law.

Currently, some 531,000 settlers are living in West Bank settlements, which are considered illegal under international law.

“The Hague Regulations prohibit the occupying power to undertake permanent changes in the occupied area, unless these are due to military needs in the narrow sense of the term, or unless they are undertaken for the benefit of the local population,” added the B’Tselem.