Dec 27 2017
Toxic environment of radical Israeli settlements incubates violence, while Israeli occupation forces has miserable record of bringing those who attack Palestinians to justice, Rabbi Arik Ascherman said.
In an opinion article published by the Israeli newspaper Haaretz on Tuesday, Ascherman said he was attacked with a knife by a masked settler from the illegal settlement of Itmar in 2015 while he was leading Israeli occuaption forces to a fire set by settlers in a Palestinian olive grove.
The attacker, Ascherman ironically said, was taken to court and then was sentenced, but to 150 hours of community service.
He must pay me NIS5,000 ($1,435) in damages and will need to pay an additional NIS5,000 if he is involved in violence during the next two years.
Ascherman also said that the settlers would not be incarcerated. There will be no conviction on his record, allowing him a new start and to enter the army when he reaches the age of conscription.
For these reasons, Ascherman voiced out his concern that more attacks by Israeli Jewish settlers would be carried out against Palestinians and human rights defenders.
Referring to the Israeli human rights group Yesh Din, Ascherman said that between 2013-2016, a mere 20 cases out of 289 cases of Israeli nationalists committing ideologically motivated offenses against Palestinians led to indictments against offenders.
To deter such stray settlers, supported by the government, Ascherman said he would like to put on trial those who instruct the violent settlers and incite them to attack the Palestinians, pro-Palestine activists and human rights defenders.
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