Violence and Impunity in the West Bank During the COVID-19 Pandemic   [open pdf - 0B]

From the Introduction: "The spread of COVID-19 [coronavirus disease 2019] has brought life to a halt throughout Israel and the Occupied Palestinian Territory (OPT) - and has spurred the formation of a unity government in Israel. However, rather than demonstrating the urgency of achieving an equitable, rights-based resolution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, the pandemic has given cover to increased violence by Israeli settlers against Palestinian civilians and an accelerated effort by the Israeli government to formally annex Palestinian lands in the West Bank. Israeli authorities systematically fail to protect Palestinians from settler violence, even as they step up efforts to demolish Palestinian construction that they deem unauthorized and limit Palestinian access to agricultural land. Oxfam recognizes that Palestinians have perpetrated condemnable attacks against Israeli settlers, but also that they have faced swift - and often heavy-handed - justice. This paper focuses on violence by and impunity for Israeli settlers, the beneficiaries of a two-tiered justice system that enables the 'de facto' annexation of Palestinian land and has laid the groundwork for 'de jure' annexation that Israel, with United States support, is now pursuing. Although violence by settlers is mostly targeted against Palestinian civilians and their property, it has also resulted in Israeli casualties and fatalities."

2020 Oxfam International
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