Monday April 8, 2013, the Media and Education Department at the Palestinian Liberation Organization (PLO) called for conducting all needed arrangements to file lawsuits against Israeli settlers, and Israeli political leaders, at international courts “in order to prosecute them for violations of International Law”, and to ensure protecting to the Palestinian People. The PLO strongly denounced a recent attack carried out by extremist settlers against two mosques in Teqoua’ Palestinian village, east of the West Bank city of Bethlehem. The settlers wrote “Price Tag” graffiti, and some threats against the villagers, the Palestine News Network (PNN) has reported.

The department said that “the existence of the settlers in the occupied state of Palestine violates international law, and is considered a war crime according to the Rome Statute”.

It added that the settlers are not being prosecuted for their crimes, in addition to the fact that they receive funding, and protection from the army, “an issue that constitutes another war crime”.

The department further stated that there has been a serious escalation in attacks against holy sites in Palestine, and warned that such attacks could drag the region into a renewed wave of clashes.

“Israel must admit and recognize its illegitimate presence in the occupied territories”, the PLO said, “It must remove its settlers, and stop the construction of settlements, before the entire region is dragged into a new, extended, cycle of violence”.