NABLUS, Friday, June 18, 2021 (WAFA) – Dozens of Palestinians, including two medics, were injured by gunfire as Israeli occupation forces today quelled an anti-settlement rally in Beita town, south of the West Bank city of Nablus, according to local and medical sources.
They said that Israeli forces cracked down on a rally called for to protest the construction of the new colonial settlement of Eviatar atop Jabal Sabih Mount, near the town, injuring 18 Palestinians, including two paramedics, with rubber-coated steel bullets and causing scores others to suffocate from tear gas.
The residents of Beita and the surrounding villages have been holding weekly Friday rallies to protest the construction of the new colonial settlement of Givat Eviatar atop Jabal Sabih as well as the seizure of lands belonging to the villagers of Beita, Huwarra, and Za‘tara to inaugurate a new settler-only bypass road.
Israeli occupation forces have used fatal violence to disperse the rallies, killing five Palestinians from the town and injuring over 618 others in almost a month.
In addition to Mount Sabih, Israeli forces have erected another colonial settlement outpost atop Mount Al-Arma, north of Beita, a few months ago, as both mounts enjoy a strategic location as they overlook the Jordan Valley, a fertile strip of land running west along the Jordan River which makes up approximately 30% of the West Bank.
Seizing the two hilltops represents a panoptical defensive tool as they would grant the Israeli occupation with a panoramic view over the Jordan Valley and the whole district of Nablus. This is why the Israeli occupation authorities have assigned them a place in its settlement expansion project.
The construction of the two colonial outposts atop Mount Sabih, south of Beita, and Mount Al-Arma, north of the town, besides to a bypass road to the west is an Israeli measure to push Palestinian villages and towns into crowded enclaves, ghettos, surrounded by walls, settlements and military installations, and disrupt their geographic contiguity with other parts of the West Bank.
The number of settlers living in Jewish-only colonial settlements across occupied East Jerusalem and the West Bank in violation of international law has jumped to over 700,000 and colonial settlement expansion has tripled since the signing of Oslo Accords in 1993.
Israel’s nation-state law, passed in July 2018, enshrines Jewish supremacy, and states that building and strengthening the colonial settlements is a “national interest.”