Ma'an News Agency
December 6, 2011 - 1:00am

Israeli settlers on Monday kidnapped a 60-year-old shepherd after attacking him in Orif village south of Nablus, officials said.

Village council head Fawzi Shehadeh said six residents of Yitzhar settlement attacked Salim Jamil Shehadeh near the local high school and took him away in a car.

The settlers stole all 50 of his sheep, the councilor added.

Palestinian Authority settlement affairs official Ghassan Doughlas told Ma'an the government was conducting intensive negotiations with Israeli officials to secure the shepherd's release.

On Saturday, settlers from Itamar violently assaulted elderly shepherd Najih Abdul-Qadir as he worked on his land east of Nablus, Doughlas said.

Some 500,000 Israelis live in Jewish-only settlements in the West Bank and East Jerusalem. There are about 2.5 million Palestinians in the same territory.

All settlements are considered illegal under international law.


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