Israeli settlers, Saturday, buried a Palestinian-owned water well in the town of al-Khader, south of Bethlehem, with dirt and rocks to prevent the owner from using it to irrigate his crops.Coordinator of the anti wall and settlement committee, Ahmad Salah, informed WAFA that a group of settlers filled a water well belonging to local Mohammad al-Baik with dirt and rocks, noting that the well is located in an agricultural land adjacent to the Israeli settlement of Eliezer, built illegally on the land of the town’s land.
The activist said that the well was built there almost 60 years ago and is used for irrigation purposes.
According to B’Tselem, the Israeli information center for human rights, “Israeli civilians have perpetrated various forms of violence against Palestinians in the Occupied Territories, damaging their lands, their persons and their property.”
The center stressed that, “As the occupying force, Israel must protect the Palestinians in the West Bank. However, the Israeli authorities neglect to fulfill this responsibility and do not do enough to prevent Israeli civilians from attacking Palestinians, their property and their lands.”
“The undeclared policy of the Israeli authorities in response to these attacks is lenient and conciliatory. Perpetrators are rarely tried, and many cases are not investigated at all or are closed with no operative conclusions.”
According to OCHA, ““The Israeli authorities repeatedly fail to enforce the rule of law in response to Israeli settlers’ acts of violence against Palestinians. Israeli forces often fail to stop attacks and follow-up afterwards is inadequate or poorly conducted. Measures of the current system, including requiring Palestinians to file complaints at police stations located inside Israeli settlements, actively work against the rule of law by discouraging Palestinians from filing complaints.”
Meanwhile, Al-Haq human rights organization stated that, “The illegal Israeli settlement policy of transferring Israeli civilians into occupied territory is directly responsible for creating a hostile environment that puts civilians, both Israeli and Palestinian, in harm’s way.”
Settlements are illegal under international law as they violate Article 49 of the Fourth Geneva Convention, which prohibits the transfer of the occupying power’s civilian population into occupied territory.
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