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Israel continues to suppress anti-settlement protests in West Bank

US Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) (L) talks with Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) during a rally with fellow Democrats before voting on H.R. 1, or the People Act, on the East Steps of the US Capitol on March 08, 2019 in Washington, DC. (AFP photo)
Palestinian protesters and Israeli forces clash following a demonstration against settlements in the village of Beita in the occupied West Bank, on November 19, 2021. (Photo by AFP)

Israeli forces have suppressed fresh protests staged by defiant Palestinians to condemn the expansion of settlements in the occupied West Bank.

On Friday, clashes erupted between Palestinian protesters and Israeli troops on Sobeih Mountain in the flashpoint town of Beita, south of the West Bank city of Nablus.

The Palestine Red Crescent ambulance service said dozens of injuries had been reported in the clashes. The wounded included three Palestinians who were hit by rubber bullets, and 24 others who suffered breathing difficulties due to inhaling tear gas used by the Israeli troops.

Since May, Beita has seen intensified clashes between Israeli forces and Palestinians protesting against a settlement outpost that has been established on Sobeih Mountain by settlers under the protection of Israeli forces.

According to the Palestine Red Crescent ambulance service, seven Palestinians also suffered breathing difficulties due to the inhalation of tear gas during clashes with the Israeli troops in the village of Beit Dajan, to the east of Nablus.

Beit Dajan has also seen clashes between Israeli forces and Palestinians on lands threatened with seizure for several months.

Israeli forces also dispersed an anti-settlement rally in Kafr Qaddum, east of the West Bank city of Qalqilya on Friday. The official Palestinian news agency WAFA said the Israeli forces used tear gas and rubber bullets against the protesters, leaving scores of people wounded.

Local sources also told WAFA that Israeli army troops fired rubber bullets, sound bombs, and tear gas at young men protesting after Friday prayers in Bab al-Zawiya in the city of al-Khalil (Hebron).

The clashes left two people hit by rubber bullets and tens of others suffering breathing difficulties.

Israeli forces usually use force to disperse weekly anti-settlement protests in the occupied West Bank.

Israel occupied the West Bank and the Gaza Strip — territories the Palestinians want for a future state — during the six-day Arab-Israeli war in 1967. It later had to withdraw from Gaza.

More than 600,000 Israelis live in over 230 settlements built since the 1967 occupation of the Palestinian territories of the West Bank. All the settlements are illegal under international law. The United Nations Security Council has condemned the settlement activities in several resolutions.


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