PA President Abbas urges tougher stance against Israeli settler violence

PA President Abbas urges tougher stance against Israeli settler violence
2 min read
24 December, 2021
Mahmoud Abbas has urged the international community to hold Israel to account for an 'increase in terrorist attacks by Israeli settlers'.
Mahmoud Abbas urged for action to be taken against Israel [Getty]

Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas urged the international community to intervene to protect Palestinians from increasing Israeli settler violence in the occupied West Bank.

Abbas said the Israeli government is to blame for an "increase in terrorist attacks by Israeli settlers against defenceless Palestinian communities across the occupied West Bank," according to a statement carried by Palestinian Authority's news agency Wafa.

He gave special mention to the northern West Bank area of Burqa, where the illegal Israeli settlement outpost of Homesh was evacuated in 2005 but continues to suffer settler violence.

Abbas urged the UN Security Council, to intervene to protect Palestinians living amongst settlers, urging that "Israel cannot continue to act as a state above the law."

The international community, especially the US, must work to pressure the Israeli government to halt illegal settlement construction and to put an end to settler attacks, he added.

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Israel has occupied the West Bank illegally since 1967, committing various violations against Palestinian civilians. 

More than 600,000 Israeli Jews live in settlements in the occupied West Bank and East Jerusalem, in constructions considered illegal under international law.

Many of the illegal settlements resemble towns and suburbs, with built-up neighbourhoods and shopping malls. Some settlers have established dozens of additional outposts without authorisation from Israeli authorities.

Palestinians view the settlements as the main obstacle to the creation of a viable Palestinian state, which is still widely seen as the only way to resolve the conflict. 

Israeli Prime Minister Naftali Bennett is a strong supporter of settlements who is opposed to a Palestinian state and has shown no interest in reviving the long-dormant peace process.