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Israeli settlers set up unauthorized outpost in northern West Bank

This picture shows a general view of the Israeli Nof Zion settlement in East Jerusalem al-Quds on October 25, 2017. (Photo by the AP)

A group of Israeli settlers have established an unauthorized outpost in the northern part of the occupied West Bank in the latest move that would likely make it difficult for local Palestinians to gain access to their nearby land.

The coordinator for the popular anti-settlement committee south of Nablus, Bashar al-Qaryouti, told Arabic-language Safa news agency that settlers from the evacuated settlement of Amona have erected five tents and several shelters in close proximity to Qaryout village, located 28 kilometers southeast of Nablus. 

Qaryouti noted that settlers have carried out acts of barbarism and intimidation against local Palestinian farmers. Some of the Jewish extremists keep wandering around with sophisticated automatic weapons, threatening locals.

The Palestinian anti-settlement activist explained that settlers have large herds of livestock, leaving them grazing in Palestinian agricultural land and causing great damage to their olive trees.

Qaryouti added that Palestinian farmers are afraid to get close to their land, stressing that legal steps had been taken to remove the outpost.

This aerial file picture, taken through the window of an airplane, shows the Israeli Ariel settlement in the occupied West Bank. (Photo by the AP)

Less than a month before US President Donald Trump took office in January 2017, the United Nations Security Council adopted Resolution 2334, calling on Israel to “immediately and completely cease all settlement activities in the occupied Palestinian territories, including East Jerusalem” al-Quds.

About 600,000 Israelis live in over 230 illegal settlements built since the 1967 Israeli occupation of the Palestinian territories of the West Bank and East Jerusalem al-Quds.

Palestinians want the West Bank as part of a future independent Palestinian state, with East Jerusalem al-Quds as its capital.

The last round of Israeli-Palestinian talks collapsed in 2014. Among the major sticking points in those negotiations was Israel’s continued settlement expansion on Palestinian territories.

Trump backtracked on Washington’s support for a “two-state solution” in February last year, saying he would support any solution favored by both sides.

“Looking at two-state or one-state, I like the one that both parties like. I’m very happy with the one both parties like. I can live with either one,” the US president said during a joint press conference with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in Washington on February 15, 2017.

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