West Bank Bedouin Tent Set Ablaze, IDF Suspects Jewish Assailants

The tent was unoccupied, 'revenge' – in Hebrew – was spray-painted nearby; 3 settler teens taken in for questioning by the Shin Bet.

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Yussuf Ka'abanah, the tent's owner, points at the graffiti left by the assailants.
Yussuf Ka'abanah, the tent's owner, points at the graffiti left by the assailants. Credit: Zakaria Sadeh from Rabbis for Human Rights

A Bedouin tent was set on fire in the West Bank near Ramallah early on Thursday. The tent was unoccupied and no one was hurt. The Hebrew words for "revenge" and "administrative" (presumably referring to the recent administrative detention of right-wing activists) was spray-painted on a stone nearby.

The Israeli Defense Forces confirmed that the attack took place and that Jewish assailants are suspected. Two teens and an adult man from the Baladim outpost, a satellite outpost of the West Bank's Kochav Hashachar settlement, were arrested and taken to a Shin Bet facility for questioning on suspicion of arson.

"Just last week we left the tent for a place at a nearby hill because of the heat. Fortunately for us, no one was inside the tent when it was set on fire, otherwise the whole family would have burned," Ouday Kaaba, the tent owner's son, told Haaretz.

According to Kaaba, the tent housed eight people, including children. He said the incident occurred late at night, and that they only discovered the damage when they arrived at the scene in the morning. Kaaba said the family stored animal feed for their herd and a lot of property.

Also overnight, according to Palestinian sources, the Popular Resistance Committees repelled an attack by settlers in Awarta, near Nablus. According to the Palestinians, the settlers fled once they saw that they were discovered.

The Rabbis for Human Rights group said in response to the arson that "it's time for our country to make every effort to catch those extremists, perpetrators of hate crime and terrorism. Administrative detention without due legal process isn't the way, but investing more effort and resources is. It's a miracle that the incident tonight didn't end with another disaster and fatalities."

Palestinians looking over the charred remains of the tent.Credit: Zakaria Sadeh from Rabbis for Human Rights

Two weeks ago, a house in Duma near Nablus was set ablaze, killing a toddler, his father and seriously injuring the mother and another son. The mother later succumbed to her wounds.

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