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Sunday, October 2, 2011

WATCH: Settlers, left-wing activists clash in West Bank

Video released by left-wing group shows altercation between residents of the West Bank settlement of Anatot, demonstrators; settlement spokesperson: left-wing activists aided Palestinian who had threatened children and passersby, blocked roads, set fire to fields.

By Haaretz
A video released by left-wing activists on Sunday showed an altercation between activists and the residents of the West Bank settlement of Anatot thattook place last Friday.
The confrontation erupted between the two groups after activists had accompanied a Palestinian who owns agricultural land within the confines of the settlement and who came to work his land.

At one point, the activists began hanging Palestinian flags and defaced a slogan that read "the Land of Israel for the Jewish people ["Am Yisrael"] by changing "Israel" to "Palestine."
anatot - AFP - October 2 2011
The clash in Anatot, northeast of Jerusalem, on Friday.
Photo by: AFP

Dozens of Anatot residents who saw what was happening came out and attacked the group of activists, three of whom were injured, including one who broke his arm. Police arrived about an hour later to separate the two sides.
Another incident took place when another group left-wing activists came to Anatot later Friday to protest the earlier incident. They were stopped at the gate to the settlement by the Anatot security coordinator, with some Anatot residents striking the demonstrators before the police arrived at the scene.
All in all, a reported 26 people were wounded in both events, 9 of whom were evacuated to nearby hospitals.
Israel Police said in response that its forces arrived at the scene of the altercation after 10 minutes, and that several police officers were wounded after stones were hurled at them. In addition, the police said, three left-wing activists were arrested.
In an apparent reference to Yasin Rifai, the Palestinian farmer, Anatot's secretariat stated that the settlement has been subject to provocations from an individual from Jerusalem who claims ownership of land in the middle of Anatot, only a portion of which he actually owns.

According to the secretariat, the individual had threatened children and passersby, blocked roads, set fire to fields, built illegally, and damaged an archeological site, among other acts.
The settlement secretariat alleged that the left-wing activists entered the settlement on Friday and began throwing stones, injuring one child, and that they spray painted the slogan "God is great" in Arabic at the archeological site and later attacked cars of those attempting to enter the settlement. Police are investigating the incidents.

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