Palestinian boys attacked and kidnapped by Israeli settlers
Two young Palestinian boys were attacked by Israeli settlers, according to the International Solidarity Movement. Hasim Abu Zeed, 13, and Hathem Yaser Abu Zeed, 9, were kidnapped and almost shot at near their home in Deir Istiya. Everyday, the two boys’ family cross a road which acts as a bridge between their home and the village. However, it puts the family in danger; exposing them to harassment and violence from the settlers. Yesterday evening, the two boys were dragged inside a car as they passed a road to visit a store in the village. Hasim screamed which shook local people out of their sleep which alarmed the settlers and the boys managed to wriggle free from their grip and managed to escape into the olive fields which is close to their home. As the boys ran for their lives, one of the settlers pulled out an M16 and attempted to shoot them and fired a shot into the sky. Neither of the boys were injured fortunately. When the Israeli soldiers arrived, they offered to protect the family for four days but left after an hour. This was not the first time the children were attacked by Israeli settlers and, after this incident, the family are scared for their well-being. Several months ago, Hathem’s younger brother, Ibrahim Yaser Abu Zeed, 8, was crossing the street when a settler’s car ran him over; dragging him several metres before eventually driving away. When the child was found, his wounds were very severe that it seemed likely he would not survive. He was taken to a hospital inside Israel and survived but was traumatised and badly injured and returned to his family. Even so many months later, he still has to use a prescribed cream on his wounds to help heal the scar tissue. The cream costs 170 shekels; incredibly expensive and seriously affects a average Palestinian family’s financial budget. Physical violence and harassment from settlers in Deir Istiya is common unfortunately and the situation spreads far and wide to many other Palestinian villages where illegal settlements are built. Deir Istiya is surrounded by illegal settlements which continue to steal more and more land; ousting more Palestinians from their homes. The village is located in area A which is under full Palestinian Authority civil and security control but it is surrounded by area C which is under full Israeli military civil and security control. The nine members in the Zeed family live in two rooms. The father of the family tried to construct a tent for his goats next to his house and the Israeli soldiers immediately ordered him to destroy it or they would force him to pay them (the soldiers) to destroy it.