OCHA: Settlers damaged 900 trees, and the occupation authorities demolished 57 buildings within half a month

The Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs in the Occupied Palestinian Territory - "OCHA" revealed the escalation of Israeli attacks and settler violence in the occupied Palestinian territories.

The United Nations said in its fortnightly report (the first half of this month) that the Israeli forces injured a total of 171 Palestinians, including at least 44 children, throughout the West Bank, and most of those injuries (116 or 68 percent) were recorded in the Nablus governorate. .

In all, 126 Palestinians received treatment for tear gas inhalation, 12 were injured by rubber bullets and 23 by live ammunition, four were physically assaulted, two were injured by shrapnel and pepper spray, and four were injured by tear gas canisters. Of these, 22 were injured during incidents. Israeli settlers and 101 others participated in it during military operations and clashes, including search and arrest operations, while the rest (48 Palestinians) were injured in demonstrations protesting settlement expansion and access restrictions near Kafr Qaddum (Qalqiliya), Beit Dajan (Nablus) and Al-Nabi Saleh (Ramallah).

In two incidents, on 9 and 16 December, Israeli forces injured 74 Palestinians, including three with live ammunition, when clashes erupted near a military tower at the entrance to Osrin village (Nablus). 

The Palestinians threw stones at the forces stationed near the tower, which responded by firing live ammunition and rubber-coated metal bullets.
Among the settler violence, the report said: “Israeli settlers injured six Palestinians, including a child, in six incidents and people known or believed to be Israeli settlers damaged Palestinian property in 20 incidents, in addition to 22 Palestinians injured by Israeli forces in the settler -related incidents.

The report added: “According to sources in these communities, Israeli settlers damaged about 900 olive trees on Palestinian lands close to the settlements.

He explained that the occupation authorities demolished, confiscated, or forced their owners to demolish 57 buildings owned by Palestinians in East Jerusalem and Area C of the West Bank, including 17 houses, under the pretext of not having building permits, which is impossible to obtain .

She indicated that thirteen of these buildings were provided by donors as humanitarian aid. As a result, 44 Palestinians, including 22 children, were displaced, and the livelihoods of some 2,000 others were affected.

It is noted that 46 of those structures were located in Area C, including two that were demolished pursuant to Military Order 1797, which gives only 96 hours notice and very limited grounds for filing legal challenges to demolitions.

The report added that, on December 6, Israeli forces confiscated two tents and a toilet funded by donors in Isfiyyat al-Fawqa (Hebron), in an area designated by the Israeli authorities as “Firing Zone 918.” These structures were provided in the context of the response to the demolition of the assembly school by the Israeli authorities on November 23, 2022, under the pretext of lacking a building permit. Twenty-one students from three communities south of Hebron attended this school. The remaining seven homes were demolished in Jerusalem, including a house demolished by its owner in Al-Issawiya himself to avoid paying fines to the Israeli authorities.

During the reporting period, Israeli forces carried out military training for three consecutive days (13-15 December) in Masafer Yatta, south of Hebron, and the Israeli authorities classify this area as a “firing zone” and declare it a closed area.

 This training, in which military vehicles participated without firing live ammunition, disrupted the ability of Palestinians to access basic services, and this is the third time that such training has taken place since the beginning of the year in that area, where more than 1,000 Palestinians live, including 560 children, in 13 pastoral communities in Masafer Yatta. These practices form part of a coercive environment that pushes Palestinians to leave their homes and may result in their forced deportation.

In the Gaza Strip, Israeli forces fired warning fire on at least 39 occasions near the Israeli perimeter fence or off the coast, citing access restrictions. There were no reports of injuries or damage. On three occasions, Israeli military bulldozers leveled land inside Gaza near the perimeter fence, east of Gaza and east of Rafah.

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