Two Palestinians from the Hebron-area village of Beit Ummar were lightly injured Friday after an Israeli settler attempted to run them over on a main road connecting the southern occupied West Bank city of Hebron to Jerusalem.
Local activist Muhammad Awad told Ma’an News Agency that an Israeli settler was driving on the road, located near Beit Ummar, when the settler attempted to to run over Palestinians Muhammad Basem Khader al-Alami, 25, and Saed Samir Hassan al-Salibi, 20.
“The Israeli settler drove very fast with his car towards the two, who noticed the settler’s car rushing towards them at the last moment, causing them to fall on the side of the street, while the Israeli settler escaped,” Awad said, describing the scene.
An Israeli army spokesperson said they were looking into reports.
The incident came a day after Israeli settlers from the illegal settlement of Yitzhar in the northern West Bank closed a Nablus-area road in protest, calling for “revenge” on Palestinians after an alleged car-ramming attack was carried out earlier in the day near the illegal Israeli Ofra settlement in Ramallah, which killed an Israeli soldier and wounded another moderately.
Incidents involving Israeli settlers hitting Palestinians in the occupied Palestinian territory are a relatively regular occurrence, and are usually treated by Israeli security forces as accidents, even in cases when witnesses claim the car rammings were deliberate.
Many Palestinian activists and rights groups have accused Israel of fostering a “culture of impunity” for Israeli settlers and soldiers committing violent acts against Palestinians.
Between 500,000 and 600,000 Israelis live in Jewish-only settlements across occupied East Jerusalem and the West Bank in violation of international law, with announcements of settlement expansion earlier this year sparking condemnation from the international community.
According to the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA), there were a total of 107 reported settler attacks against Palestinians and their properties in the West Bank and occupied East Jerusalem in 2016.