Israeli Settlers Invade Beit Ommar Village

13 March 2011

On Saturday, March 12, 2011 at around 8pm, three bus loads full of Israeli settlers entered the village of Beit Ommar, breaking into at least two residences and beating the Palestinian occupants. The attacks seemed to be coordinated as part of other settler violence across the West Bank. Israeli settlers attacked Palestinians in villages near Nablus, Ramallah, and Hebron.

In Beit Ommar, three buses of settlers from Bat Ayn and Kiryat Arba Settlements stopped on Route 60 near the entrance of the village. The settlers entered a residence close to the Israeli watchtower, breaking everything inside the house and smashing flower pots and destroying trees and plants outside. The settlers then entered another house belonging to the al-Alami family, beating the Palestinian occupants inside the residence.

At this point six Israeli military jeeps also entered the village and soldiers shot many tear gas canisters near Palestinian houses. Two Palestinians, 16-year-old Muayad al-Alami and 70-year-old Sabha Abu Ayyesh, were injured from the tear gas. An ambulance took them to a hospital in Hebron for treatment. Israeli soldiers also occupied the house of Saleh Abu Ayyesh and used it as a vantage point to shoot tear gas and sound bombs at villagers who tried to defend their homes from the settler attack.

By 11pm, the buses of settlers had left Beit Ommar but a second group of settlers from Karmei Tsur attempted to invade the southern area of the village. Israeli Forces prevented them from doing as they still maintained positions in Palestinian residences.