Israeli settlers assaulted and severely beat a Palestinian shepherd near the village of Taybeh, east of Ramallah, Tuesday, according to witnesses.WAFA reports that at least seven settlers wearing masks assaulted shepherd Sulaiman Kaabeneh, 50, and beat him with their clubs as he was grazing his sheep, near the village. Kaabneh sustained bruises and wounds throughout his body, upon which he was transferred to hospital for medical treatment. His case was described as moderate.

Also on Tuesday, Israeli settlers cultivated Palestinian-owned land previously seized in Khalet al-Nakhleh, according to a local activist.

Hasan Breijah, coordinator of the Anti-wall and Settlement Popular Committee, said that settlers from the illegal Israeli settlement of Efrat planted olive saplings on Palestinian-owned land near Wadi Rahhal, to the south of Bethlehem.

Settlers had taken the land, earlier, where they set up a tent and structures made of wood and tin sheets, in response to an Israeli court ruling which ordered their evacuation.

Settlers assaults against shepherds and farmers have recently escalated in the region, posing great danger to their lives. Several similar cases have been reported by human rights organizations, according to WAFA, during the past few months.

More than 500,000 Israelis live in illegal settlements across the West Bank and East Jerusalem, in direct contravention of international law.