Mosque Burned Down by Extremist Settlers in the West Bank

May 5, 2010

A mosque was burned down by extremist Israeli settlers  in Libban Al Sharqiya, near Nablus, on Tuesday. Of course, the Israeli authorities who were investigating the fire have so far found “no proof” that the settlers were the cause of the fire, the fact that settlers in the West Bank have attempted to burn down mosques in the past points to their involvement.

Because attacks on religious sites are more of an incitement  for the majority of Palestinians than the occasional murders of Palestinians by the Israeli military in the West Bank—emotions are running high. Also adding to the tension is the fact that “proximity talks” are about to begin this week between Israeli and Palestinian leaders.

Villagers say “there is no doubt that those who committed this act are settlers” because before the mosque was burnt, the arsonists arranged the mosque’s Qurans neatly in the middle of the fire—and in Islam, a Quran can never be destroyed (instead they are buried, or hidden in the space between walls, etc…).

They also pointed out past attacks by the nearby settlers including burning an olive press and cars in the area. Other places in the West Bank, settlers have set fire to whole Palestinian fields, destroying the crops, cutting down olive trees, and even releasing wild boars on nearby Palestinian villages.

Some of the more radical settlers living in the West Bank have a policy called “price tag”—where any attempt by the Israeli military to dismantle illegal property in settlements or outposts is followed by aggressive acts against the nearby Palestinian communities. On Monday, several structures in the settlement Shavei Shomron were destroyed because they were being built in violation of Israel’s partial settlement freeze.


  1. But it seems there may be a possibility that the arson was the result of the Mosque rennovations going on.

  2. That is true…Based on the history of settler attacks in the West Bank I think its more likely to be a settler attack than some kind of electrical fire.

    And judging from past Israeli “investigations” into many settler attacks that happen in the West Bank, I dont think they ever find evidence against the settlers.

    And when there is too much evidence and eye witnesses to deny Israeli involvement, the authorities dismiss it on the basis that that person is “mentally disturbed” and not representative of any Israeli/settler trends…as they did with Tietel

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