Settlers attacking Palestinians has become a growing phenomenon according to a statement released by Wadi Hilwe’s Information Centre in Silwan. Meanwhile police allow these attacks to occur, taking no actions against the attackers.
In the last week (16th to 25th March), six of these types of incidents are mentioned by the centre. They took place in the Old City and Silwan. A common occurrence was the use of pepper spray.
The last attack was on Monday as 4 of Israeli settlers attacked 16-year-old Nasser Abu Madi from Silwan. While he was on his way to school, he was accosted near the Don Gate. His attackers started cussing him and tried to spray him. He attempted to fight back in order to defend himself. The settlers then called the police who were around the corner; Nasser was arrested. He was taken to Saladin Police Centre where he was kept under investigation over three hours. His father was preventing from seeing him. When he was finally released it was under conditions of a 10-day house arrest with allowances to leave for school, but only in the company of his father.
His father said: “The investigators said they would call me after the Jewish holiday”. He went on to explain this was in relation to another incident. In the morning four settlers cursed him and tried to spray him. He took the spray from them, hitting them back; the police arrested him as a result. One of the settlers was taken in by the police simply to give his testimony.
The centre showed that on 20thJanuary 2013 the 9-year-old Ebrahim Ramzi al Rajabi was injured on his the roof of his house in the Old City. Two extremist Israelis threw broken glass at him, causing a deep cut on his face which required stitches at the hospital. He stated that he saw the same settler the following day in the city, despite pressing charges against him.
On 18th March.2013 a 16-year-old settler attacked 12 years old Dina Murad Jweles and her 12 years old brother Muhammad in Wadi Hilwe, Silwan. They were walking to school when he hit them and sprayed them. This lead to a physical confrontation, during which Dina took a small knife from her bag to scare him. The guards of the City Of David settlement held her whilst they called the police who came and arrested the siblings.
The Centre says children who were playing outside their house were attacked mid-March. The settler attempted to spray them with gas. However, he missed, spraying his own face instead. He also chased them with a stick and put his finger in Muhammad’s eye, causing injury.
On 16th March 2013 an Israeli settler attacked 40-year-old woman Eim Zeyad Abu Hadwan and her 19-year-old daughter Alaa. They had been walking through the Jewish neighborhood in the Old City. He pushed Alaa, attempting to take off her hijab. He then sprayed her and her mother with a pepper spray.