PressTV - Illegal Israeli settlers break into Palestinian site:
Sun Apr 24, 2011 5:43PM
Ibrahim Husseini, Press TV, al-Quds
"Clashes erupted Sunday morning between armed Israeli settlers and Palestinian security officers when dozens of armed ultra-Orthodox settlers broke into a Palestinian checkpoint near the Joseph tomb site in the city of Nablus, without coordinating with the Palestinian side and without the required escort of Israeli forces, violating a protocol agreed upon between the Israelis and the Palestinians.
Sources say the Palestinian officers informed the Israeli settlers that they're not allowed to be there without coordination, but the settlers did not obey orders, and instead, drew their guns toward Palestinian officers.
In response Palestinians security officers first fired warning shots into the air before shooting erupted between both sides.
One Israeli settler died of his wounds and three others were injured.
The incident sparked angry reactions from within the Israeli right who called for complete Israeli control on the religious site.
In retaliation, dozens of masked Israeli settlers attacked the Palestinian village of Hawara, by throwing stones at Palestinian vehicles, and torching a car. A Palestinian child was wounded in the incident.
Palestinians say settlers' attacks against them are frequent and inflict tremendous damage to their property and endanger their lives.
Over 500,000 Israeli settlers live in settlements in the Palestinian territories. Palestinians insist that the Israeli settlements constitute a major stumbling block to the peace process and to the creation of a viable Palestinian state.
Observers say ongoing settlement activity by Israel is becoming a friction point between Israelis and Palestinians, and while the Israeli right remains firmly behind the settlers' movement, talks between the Israelis and the Palestinians, becomes more and more distant.
Violence between Israeli settlers and Palestinians has been on the rise in recent months. Analysts believe that this incident will only serve to fuel arguments that will lead to more conflicts.
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