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Three Palestinians killed in settler rampages in West Bank

A 14-year-old Jewish boy disappeared and was subsequently found murdered in a terror attack. Settlers vowed vengeance.
TJI Wrap
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Damaged house with a star of David and Hebrew grafitti

The Hebrew word “Vengeance” and a Star of David painted on a vandalised house in Al-Lubban ash-Sharqiya village in the West Bank, near Nablus. ( Nedal Eshtayah/Anadolu via Getty Images)

Published: 15 April 2024

Last updated: 16 April 2024

Settlers rampaged through Palestinian West Bank villages, causing three deaths, more than 20 injuries and significant property damage between Friday and Monday.

The attacks began after 14-year-old Benjamin Achimeir disappeared on Thursday night. He was found dead on Saturday, killed in a terror attack, security forces said.

Two Palestinians were shot dead, apparently by settlers in a clash near the northern West Bank village of Aqrabah on Monday.

A third Palestinian man, identified as Jehad Abu Alia, 26, was killed on Friday in the the village of al-Mughayyir, northeast of Ramallah, though it was unclear whether he was shot by settlers or Israeli security forces who arrived on the scene amid clashes between the settlers and residents.

Palestinian health officials said at least 25 people were injured and Yedioth Ahronoth photographer Shaul Golan reported being attacked by a group of settlers after arriving at the village to document events.

“I was walking around the village taking pictures when I saw a group of masked Jews emerge from a nearby olive grove, walking around… as if they owned the town. I filmed as they torched homes,” he told the Ynet news site.

The attacks began on Friday after Achimeir's disappearance, when dozens of armed settlers attacked Palestinian villages, burning houses and cars. They increased on Saturday after the boy's body was found.

The human rights group Yesh Din alleged Israeli security forces had failed to stop the settlers. It shared a video purporting to show a group of settlers running towards the Palestinian village, in the presence of Israeli security forces.

Defence Minister Yoav Gallant tweeted a message to settlers, explaining in utilitarian terms that it doesn't pay to lynch. "Acts of revenge will make it harder for our troops to carry out their mission," he stated, adding, "Do not take the law into your own hands". 

The United States on Monday strongly condemned both Achimeir’s murder and the murder of the three Palestinian men. The State Department said in a statement that it was increasingly concerned by the violence against Palestinians and their property in the West Bank.

“The violence must stop.  Civilians are never legitimate targets.  We call on the authorities to take measures to protect all communities from harm, and we urge Israel and the Palestinian Authority to do everything possible to de-escalate tensions,” it said.

Settler violence spiked after the October 7 massacre, but violence was already on the rise before then, according to watchdogs.


Body of Israeli shepherd, 14 found in West Bank (BBC)

Settlers riot in West Bank towns after teen’s murder; Palestinian killed, others hurt (Times of Israel)

Two Palestinians shot dead by settlers in clashes near West Bank village (Times of Israel)

Israel must halt the flare-up in the West Bank (Haaretz Editorial)


  • Avatar of Wesley Parish

    Wesley Parish16 April at 07:36 am

    One hedge against misinformation and disinformation is the use of appropriate terms. The settlers were indulging in terrorist activities, according to the definition on the FBI website, to wit:
    “Violent, criminal acts committed by individuals and/or groups to further ideological goals stemming from domestic influences, such as those of a political, religious, social, racial, or environmental nature.”
    And the (ir)relevant Israeli official was indulging in indulging them.
    Calling a spade a spade is vital when you do not wish to buy a horse and get a mule …

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