after the death of a settler in the West Bank, tensions higher than ever between Palestinians and Israelis

An Israeli reservist was killed in his car by Palestinian fire in the West Bank. This provoked a punitive operation on a Palestinian village, where Franceinfo special correspondents were located.

Clouds of black smoke cover the small town of Deir Sharaf. On both sides of the road, fires were lit in several stores and warehouses. Cars are also on fire. No resident really risks going out, but outside, a group of settlers pray and respond to the orders of a man, a rabbi. “We don’t want another murder. So we came here and stopped the traffic. A lot of soldiers arrived. And now the army is blocking the Arabs,” he explains.

The Israeli army was in fact deployed to protect the settlers. Because the situation is explosive in the occupied West Bank, where incidents have been increasing for several days. Thursday, November 2, an Israeli reservist was killed in his car by Palestinian fire in the Nablus region. The reaction was immediate: a punitive operation carried out against this Palestinian village. “God gave this land to us, not to the Palestiniansjustifies a young settler, around twenty years old. We live here, and we will continue to live here, it is our holy land. The Arabs don’t want Jews to live here, they want to kill us.”he adds.

A Palestinian villager, who works in a small business with his father, became frightened when he saw the settlers arriving. “They had a look of hatred. They looked at us as if we were guiltyhe says. Then the number of settlers increased.”

“The settlers went to the neighbors’ houses. They set fires. They behaved like barbarians.”

A Palestinian villager

at franceinfo

“If they think they are going to break us, they are making a big mistake”

Five kilometers from Deir Sharaf, a crossroads between two roads. They lead to two Palestinian towns, surrounded by settlements. A woman holds an Israeli flag in her hand. Her name is Shoshana, she lives in a Jewish colony, the first to settle in Samaria, she proudly explains to us, in 1975 exactly.

Shoshana came here after the death of this 29-year-old reservist, killed on the road by Palestinian fire. “I hope I don’t know him. When I heard that a Jew had been killed, I took my flag and told myself I was going to come here to think about him, she confides. It could have been me, my husband, my son.”

His son is currently serving in the army in southern Israel. “We must be very strong. It is our mission to fight against terrorismshe defends. If they think they’re going to break us, they’re making a big mistake.” “We’re at war.”concludes Shoshana. “Against who ?”we ask him. “The devil.”

after the death of a settler in the West Bank, tensions are higher than ever between Palestinians and Israelis – a report by our special correspondents, Valérie Crova and Gilles Gallinaro

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