Israeli forces have brutally dispersed Palestinians taking part in several anti-settlement protests across the occupied West Bank.
The Palestine Red Crescent ambulance service said a Palestinian man had been hit by rubber bullets and dozens of others had suffered breathing difficulties due to inhaling tear gas fired by Israeli forces at anti-settlement protest in the village of Beit Dajan, east of Nablus, on Friday.
For several months, Beit Dajan has been witnessing clashes between Israeli troops and Palestinians protesting in areas threatened with seizure by the Israeli regime for the expansion of settlements. At least half of the total area of Beit Dajan has so far been seized by Israel for the construction of settlements.
To the south of Nablus, Israeli forces suppressed a weekly anti-settlement rally in the flashpoint town of Beita on Friday.
Hundreds of people performed Friday noon prayers near Sobeih Mountain and marched toward the mountain to protest against a settlement outpost that has been recently established there, but they were met with force by Israeli troops, who fired tear gas and rubber bullets at them.
Moreover, Israeli forces cracked down on a weekly anti-settlement protest in Kafr Qaddum, east of Qalqilya City, on Friday, using tear gas and rubber bullets. Tens of Palestinians were injured during the clashes.
Also on Friday, Israeli forces attacked a protest against settlements and settler violence south of the occupied West Bank city of al-Khalil (Hebron), using tear gas and sound bombs, and left dozens of people suffering breathing difficulties from inhaling the toxic fumes.
Hundreds of Palestinians as well as foreign activists took part in the protest, in the Umm al-Shaqhan Village, which is threatened with Israeli seizure, east of Yatta City. The protesters were carrying Palestinian flags and chanting slogans against Israel’s ethnic cleansing of Palestinians. They stressed their determination to protect their land and to thwart Israel’s plots to expand settlements.
Three Palestinians and two pro-Palestine foreign activists were detained by the Israelis during the protest.
More than 600,000 Israelis live in over 230 settlements built since the 1967 Israeli occupation of the West Bank and East al-Quds. All Israeli settlements are illegal under international law as they are built on occupied land. The United Nations Security Council has condemned Israel’s settlement activities in the occupied territories in several resolutions.