The Palestinian Islamic Jihad resistance movement has called for resistance against Israeli occupation to be activated in all its forms and shapes across the occupied West Bank, emphasizing that Palestinians have the inalienable right to defend themselves and protect their dignity, which are being constantly violated by the regime.
“Settlers are perpetrating various acts of terror and aggression against our (Palestinian) nation under the protection of the occupation army. The Israeli military forces are besieging cities, villages as well as camps, and are assaulting our people by means of incursions, arrests and killings at checkpoints,” Tariq Salmi, the movement’s spokesman, said in a press statement on Tuesday.
He called on Palestinian resistance fighters to mount their activities across the occupied West Bank, noting that the Israeli enemy will not be deterred except by force.
Salami described illegal Israeli settlements as legitimate targets for Palestinians’ resistance operations.
The statement came after Palestinian media outlets reported that Israeli settlers had fatally shot a member of the Palestinian National Security Forces in the northern part of the West Bank.
First Lieutenant Alaa Khaled Muhammad Zahran reportedly sustained grave gunshot wounds on Monday night, when a group of settlers opened fire at his vehicle near the Palestinian town of Deir Sharaf, located northwest of Nablus.
He was taken to Rafidia Surgical Hospital in Nablus city, where he was pronounced dead by medical personnel shortly after arrival.
The Jerusalem Post later claimed in a report that Zahran had been killed by Palestinians in an internal incident, and that the shooting had not been carried out by Israeli settlers.
Recently, there has been a rise in attacks on Palestinians by gangs of roaming far-right settlers in the occupied territories.
Earlier on Monday, four Palestinian teenage girls sustained injuries after being pepper-sprayed in the face by an Israeli settler in Sheikh Jarrah neighborhood of occupied Jerusalem al-Quds.
Local sources, requesting anonymity, told Palestine’s official told WAFA that the settler had pepper sprayed the teenagers who were training for an artistic event in the neighborhood. The girls suffered burns to their faces.
Sheikh Jarrah has been the scene of frequent crackdowns by Israeli police on Palestinians protesting against the threatened expulsion of dozens of Palestinian families from their homes in favor of hardline Israeli settler groups.
Palestinians and rights groups say the case highlights discriminatory policies aimed at pushing Palestinians out of Jerusalem al-Quds.
On Friday, extremist Israeli settlers attacked Palestinian vehicles traveling along the road linking Jenin to Nablus.
Ghassan Daghlas, a Palestinian Authority official who monitors settlement activity in the northern part of the West Bank, told WAFA that a group of settlers had hurled stones and empty bottles at the Palestinian vehicles, causing damage to some of them. No injuries were reported.
Israeli settlers have been known to carry out so-called “price tag” attacks on Palestinian communities.
The United Nations warned in April that violence, including assaults and property destruction, by Israeli settlers against Palestinian civilians in the West Bank has increased substantially in recent months.
During the first three months of 2021, more than 210 incidents of violence by settlers were recorded, including the death of one Palestinian, it said.
More than 600,000 Israelis live in over 230 settlements built since the 1967 Israeli occupation of the Palestinian territories of the West Bank and East Jerusalem al-Quds. All Israeli settlements are illegal under international law.
According to human rights groups, acts of violence by Israeli settlers against Palestinians and their property are a daily occurrence throughout the occupied West Bank.