Three Settlers Hurt in Clashes With Palestinians at Razed West Bank Outpost

Some 300 residents of Arab village arrive at site of demolished outpost; Israelis claim they were ambushed, but leftist activist says settlers to blame.

Three Israelis were lightly wounded on Thursday after they were hit by rocks hurled at them during clashes with Palestinians in the northern West Bank.

The confrontation took place at the site of the recently demolished Eli Ayin outpost, between the settlement of Shiloh and the Palestinian village of Kafr Kusra.

Palestinian stone-throwers

Settler activists who came to the site of the razed outpost were greeted by hundreds of Palestinians, they said. The settlers began calling for help, they said, but were attacked by rocks hurled from every direction.

No Palestinian was injured in the incident.

"Three hundred Palestinians armed with cameras, rocks and batons came over and started walking toward the hilltop," said Guy Kreizler, a resident of a nearby settlement.

"Residents of the hilltop started calling for local security and the army. The army started shooting in the area to disperse them, but the Arabs kept coming forward because they knew nobody would should them," he added. "In the end, they were dispersed by gunshots and tear gas."

Judy Lutz left-wing activist who witnessed the event contradicted Kreizler's version of the story. Residents of Kafr Kusa had called the leftists to complain that the settlers were constantly infiltrating their village, torching their houses and firing in the area.

The Palestinians asked the leftists to assist them, said Lutz. Contrary to the settlers' defense, Lutz said that soldiers began mowing down the Palestinians and shouting obscenities before firing rounds of tear gas.