Israeli forces Wednesday morning stormed Mount Al-‘Arma, south of the West Bank city of Nablus, and assaulted Palestinians staging a sit-in atop the mount, injuring 13, said Palestinian medics.
Health Ministry medics confirmed to WAFA that they provided medical treatment for 13 Palestinians who were injured from Israeli military gunfire as the military assaulted Palestinians who gathered at the mount, known in Arabic as Jabal al-‘Arma, to defend it against settlers’ attempts to seize it
One of the injured was identified as Palestine TV reporter in Nablus Baker Abdul-Haq.
Medics elaborated that two Palestinians were injured with live ammunition, including a serious injury, and four others were injured with rubber-coated steel bullets. All the injuries were rushed to Rafidia Government Hospital.
Three others, the medics added, suffocated from tear gas inhalation. They were rushed to Huwwara Emergency Center.
Israeli soldiers prevented ambulances from approaching the mount and assaulted Palestine TV crew.
Meanwhile, Mayor of Beita town Fuad Ma’ali said that settlers overnight renewed their attempt to reach the top of the mountain, but hundreds of the residents of Beita, which lies south of Nablus, continued their daily sit-in atop the mountain in order to repel any setters’ attempt.
Residents of Beita have continued their daily sit-ins atop the mountain since Friday February 28, when settlers made the first attempt to seize the mountain and turn it into an Israeli religious tourist route.
The confrontation left 93 people injured by Israeli live fire and rubber bullets.
Palestinians say settlers had been emboldened by US President Donald Trump’s Middle East plan and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu promise to annex settlements.
Jabal al-‘Arma, which spreads over 250 dunums, is one of the most archeological sites in Nablus, and the highest peak in Beita.
According to historians, it has been inhabited since the early Bronze Age, about 3,200 years ago.
Atop the mountain lie walls which indicate that an ancient castle was built there, under which seven water tanks were hewn into the rock.
However, such features make the mountain a prime target for Israeli settlers as colonial settlements are often positioned above water reserves, effectively stealing water as well as land.