IDF beefs up West Bank troops after Israeli teen's murder, settler rampages in Palestinian villages

IDF beefs up West Bank troops after Israeli teen's murder, settler rampages in Palestinian villages The Israeli military opted to bolster its presence in the West Bank, deploying extra troops and Border Police units to the area, Report informs via Haaretz.
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April 14, 2024 10:31
IDF beefs up West Bank troops after Israeli teen's murder, settler rampages in Palestinian villages

The Israeli military opted to bolster its presence in the West Bank, deploying extra troops and Border Police units to the area, Report informs via Haaretz.

The decision was taken in light of the ongoing clashes that erupted on Saturday between settlers and Palestinians in the West Bank, following the murder of 14-year-old Binyamin Ahimeir of the Malachei HaShalom settlement.

The IDF Spokesperson Unit has confirmed that dozens of settlers and Palestinians have been wounded from rocks and shotgun fire in the confrontations across the West Bank.

Early on Saturday, Settlers blocked the entrances to the West Bank villages of Silwad, Turmos Aya and Deir Dibwan, attacking cars passing on nearby roads. Israeli army forces have also blocked the entrances to the villages later on Saturday.

Throughout Saturday, groups of settlers entered the villages of Al-Mughayyir and Duma and set fire to houses and property. At least eight Palestinians were wounded from gunfire and teargases, including one who is in a critical state.

The Israeli human rights group Yesh Din said in a statement that at least 10 villages in the West Bank were attacked by settlers, with homes and vehicles severly damaged.

The Palestinian Red Crescent says that a 14-year-old Palestinian sustained gunshot wounds in the village of Beitin near Ramallah and that clashes were also reported in the village of Qusra.

"They entered the house and burned it and burned cars, as you can see," 42-year-old Akef Abu Allu said, looking at his blackened two-story home in Al-Mughayyir.

In the nearby village of Duma, Israeli settlers set fire to around 15 homes and 10 farms, the head of the local village council, Slieman Dawabsheh, told The Associated Press, saying he had been there.

"The army came but unfortunately, the army were protecting the settlers," he said, asserting that it fired tear gas and rubber bullets at Palestinians trying to confront and expel them.

A preliminary investigation found that Ahimeir was killed by a bladed weapon. It is unclear, however, whether an altercation proceeded the assault or if it was a surprise attack.

Ahimeir's friends, who live in the Malachei Hashalom settlement, say they woke him up on Friday around 6 A.M. so that he take the sheep out and went back to sleep. He was supposed to return to the settlement around 9 A.M. but never came back. A broken hoe was found several kilometers from the settlement around 12 P.M., and some sheep came back on their own.

Defense Minister Yoav Gallant has condemned the acts of revenge performed in the West Bank by Jewish settlers, writing on X that he asks the public to "let the security forces act quickly in their search for the terrorists. Acts of revenge will make our forces' jobs harder, do not take the law into your own hands."

War Cabinet Minister Benny Gantz said in a statement that the security forces "will pursue the murderer and anyone who assisted in this atrocious act of terrorism. I call on everyone to allow the IDF and all the forces to carry out their mission. You must not take the law into your own hands."

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