Kuwait News Agency (KUNA)
September 15, 2008 - 8:00pm

The Presidency of the European Union, currently held by France, on Tuesday severely rebuked extremist Israeli settlers for violence they carried out last weekend and strongly condemned an operation that terrorized several areas in the Occupied West Bank, where one Palestinian and several injured. "The Presidency of the European Union Council firmly condemns the violence perpetrated by the Israeli settlers, notably the fires, vandalism and aggressions that took place Saturday night near Nablus," a statement from the EU said.

French Foreign Ministry spokesman Eric Chevalier, speaking for the Union, said that Israel had "a responsibility to protect the civilian Palestinian population" and this was an "obligation under international law." International law under the Geneva Convention makes the occupying power responsible for the well-being of the population under its control.

"This indiscriminate violence cannot be tolerated," the EU statement affirmed.

"The President of the EU Council calls on the Israeli government, which itself condemned these acts, not to spare any effort in protecting the Palestinian civilian population, in conformity with its international obligations relative to international law," the European Union added.

Israeli regular forces were alongside the heavily armed Jewish settlers which assaulted several Palestinian villages in the West Bank on Saturday night, notably in the Assira Al-Qibaliya area south of Nablus.

But Palestinians say that Tsahal did not intervene to stop the settlers.
During the violent rampage in the village of Assira al-Qibaliya, the settlers caused widespread damage to houses and other property and fired indiscriminately despite the presence of Israeli forces.

The attack was carried out after an assault by a Palestinian man, who stabbed a young Israeli boy, who was slightly injured.


American Task Force on Palestine - 1634 Eye St. NW, Suite 725, Washington DC 20006 - Telephone: 202-262-0017