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US 'increasingly concerned' by soaring violence against Palestinians in West Bank

On Monday, the US State Department stated that the United States is growing increasingly troubled by the violence directed at Palestinians in the occupied West Bank, resulting in at least two fatalities subsequent to the killing of a 14-year-old Israeli boy.

Anadolu Agency WORLD
Published April 15,2024

The US is "increasingly concerned" by violence perpetrated against Palestinians in the occupied West Bank that has led to at least two deaths following the murder of a 14 year-old Israeli boy, the US State Department said Monday.

Spokesperson Matthew Miller said the Biden administration is "increasingly concerned by the violence against Palestinian civilians and their property that ensued in the West Bank after" the disappearance of Binyamin Achimair, whose body was found near an illegal Israeli settler outpost in the occupied territory on Saturday.

He also condemned Achimair's murder, and extended condolences to his family and friends.

Violence against Palestinian residents that ensued in wake of Achimair's death has resulted "in dozens of injuries, property damage, and the killing of two Palestinians, 25-year-old Jihad Abu Aliya and 17-year-old Omar Ahmad Abdulghani Hamed," said Miller.

"We strongly condemn these murders, and our thoughts are with their loved ones. 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," he added.

Hundreds of armed settlers from illegal Israeli settlements and outposts repeatedly attacked Palestinian towns and villages in Ramallah and Nablus over the weekend. One attack resulted in the torching of two homes in the northern West Bank, displacing 66 residents.

A massive attack Friday on the village of al-Mughayyir, east of Ramallah in the central West Bank, resulted in the killing of a young man and injury of dozens of Palestinians. It left 40 homes and dozens of vehicles being torched.

Video that circulated on social media Sunday showed Israeli soldiers collaborating with settlers to orchestrate attacks on Palestinian vehicles in the village of Deir Dibwan, which is also east of Ramallah.

The footage appeared to show two illegal settlers entering a car garage, where they put a flammable liquid on a car, and set it ablaze while a group of Israeli soldiers were guarding them outside.

Tensions have been running high across the West Bank since Israel launched a military offensive against the Gaza Strip after a cross-border attack led by Hamas on Oct. 7 that killed roughly 1,200 people.

While settlers from illegal settlements and outposts have increased their attacks against Palestinians in the West Bank, the Israeli military has escalated its own operations, killing at least 463 Palestinians, injuring 4,750 and detaining more than 8,000 others, according to Palestinian sources.