Israeli settlers invaded the village of Tuba in the South Hebron Hills late Sunday night, 15 May. They damaged property and killed and stole livestock belonging to the Ali Awad family. Palestinians of Tuba reported that they counted seven masked settlers, who entered and left the village on foot, and saw two cars at the outskirts of Tuba, near the chicken barns of Ma’on settlement. The rampaging settlers stole seven sheep, killed two, and injured others, including one which lost an eye. In addition, the settlers upended three water tanks, which held a total of 4.5 cubic meters of water. They destroyed fences, punctured a storage tent and three large sacks of yogurt, damaged a goat pen and destroyed the ventilation pipe of an outhouse. They also set loose a donkey, which later returned.

A Tuba resident called Christian Peacemaker Teams about midnight Sunday to report the settler invasion and request help in urging the Israeli police to respond. The police refused to go to the village because no one there could speak to them in Hebrew. Two Israeli soldiers arrived in Tuba on Monday morning, but did not speak Arabic and so could not communicate with the villagers.

The Ali Awad family is considering making a complaint to the Israeli police, despite the fact that all their previous complaints about settler attacks, vandalism or harassment have not yet resulted in any indictments or compensation. On 21 March 2011, a masked settler from the illegal outpost of Havat Ma’on stabbed Mahmoud Ibrahim Ali Awad as the Palestinian traveled by donkey from Tuba to the city of Yatta. Mahmoud Ali Awad spent a week in the hospital recovering from stab wounds on his chest and arm.

See more pictures of the damage from the 15 May incident at:

Christian Peacemaker Teams and Operation Dove have maintained an international presence in At-Tuwani and the South Hebron Hills since 2004.

According to the Geneva Conventions, the International Court of Justice in the Hague, and numerous United Nations resolutions, all Israeli settlements in the Occupied Palestinian Territories are illegal. Most settlement outposts are considered illegal under Israeli law.