Palestinian mob attacks activists asserting Jewish presence in Samaria

For the second time in less than a week, Jews were attacked in Samaria. One Arab was wounded in the confrontation.

By: Batya Jerenberg, World Israel News

A group of activists from the right-wing Otzma Yehudit political party came under attack Monday morning near the village of Qusra in Samaria, where they went hiking – with the IDF’s permission – to protest last Thursday’s attack on a group of Jewish children and their parents.

The Monday trek was called in order to “display Jewish presence in the area and make it clear that this area is now a preferred spot for hikes,” stated Itamar Ben Gvir, a lawyer representing Otzma Yehudit.

A group of some 20 8th graders were hiking in the area last week, celebrating a boy’s Bar Mitzvah, when they came under attack by a violent Palestinian mob.

In Monday’s attack, the IDF, which was present from the beginning, reported that about 50 Palestinians started throwing rocks at the security forces and burning tires. In a video taken at the scene, the Arabs are seen rolling a huge boulder down a hill directly at the group of hikers. The activists say that one of the attackers was badly hurt by the boulder; the Palestinians are claiming that someone was shot and taken to a hospital in Nablus (Shechem). The army is investigating the incident.

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In reaction to the confrontation, Ben Gvir commented to Ynet, “I would expect the police to deal with the Palestinian rioters throwing rocks and boulders. When dozens of Palestinians throw massive rocks intended to kill, the army should be opening fire.”

Palestinian call for ‘revenge’

In its initial findings from last week’s near-lynch, the army confirmed the Jewish group’s testimony that the boys had come under a rock attack before one of the fathers opened fire, killing one of the Palestinians. Qusra’s Facebook page recently published a picture of the father, along with the claim that the victim, 48-year-old Mahmoud Za’al Odeh, was an innocent bystander, with the post calling him “the tortured and holy resident of our village.” The post was widely shared and many comments cursed the father, calling for revenge.

 

The IDF has now declared the area a closed military zone.