Settlers set fire to Palestinian crops south of Hebron

HEBRON, Israeli settlers Friday set fire to Palestinian crops in Masafer Yatta to the south of Hebron in the southern West Bank, said a local activist.

Rateb Jabour, a local anti-settlement activist, said that a group of Israeli settlers from Maon settlement set fire to wheat and barley crops harvested from a 20-dunum plot of farmland belonging to al-Dababseh family.

Palestinian firefighters and villagers rushed to the scene as the fire raged, but the crops were burned and destroyed. The crops were intended to be crushed and used as animal fodder.

Masafer Yatta, a collection of almost 19 hamlets to the south of Hebron, relies heavily on animal husbandry as the main source of livelihood.

Located in Area C of the West Bank, under full Israeli administrative and military control, the area has been subjected to repeated Israeli violations by settlers and soldiers targeting their main source of living – livestock.

Israeli violations against the area include demolition of animal barns, homes and residential structures. Issuance of construction permits by Israel to local Palestinians in the area is non-existent.

Settler violence against Palestinians and their property is routine in the West Bank and is rarely prosecuted by Israeli authorities.

Between 500,000 and 600,000 Israelis live in Jewish-only settlements across occupied East Jerusalem and the West Bank in violation of international law.

All settlements across the West Bank are illegal under international law, particularly article 49 of the Fourth Geneva Convention, which establishes that the occupying power shall not deport or transfer parts of its own civilian population into the territory it occupies.

Source: Palestine News & Info Agency

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