Bethlehem, 17 Shawwal 1436/2 August 2015 (MINA) – A senior leader in the Islamic Jihad movement on Saturday urged Palestinians of all political factions to “escalate resistance” against the Israeli occupation, a day after Israeli settlers killed an 18-month-old child in an arson attack in the occupied West Bank.
In a press statement, Islamic Jihad’s Secretary-General Ramadan Shallah called on “all factions of the resistance and military wings, particularly the al-Quds Bridages, to escalate resistance and to respond to this heinous crime.”
His comments followed comments from a Hamas spokesperson, who said that the killing of 18-month-old Ali Saad Dawabsha made all “Israeli soldiers and settlers legitimate targets for resistance.”, Ma’an News Agency quoted by Mi’raj Islamic News Agency (MINA) as reporting.
Shallah addressed the Dawabsha family directly, saying: “With a heavy heart we received the news of the tragedy that the settlers committed against your family, the Palestinian people, and humanity, especially because the victim was a small innocent baby.”
“This crime revealed the truth of the hatred and savagery of the Zionist settlers against the Palestinian people.”
He added that repeated Israeli attempts to “erase” the Palestinian identity should motivate Palestinians to act as one and fight to protect their land and people.
Palestinians across the occupied territories have responded to the death of the infant with fury.
The parents and four-year-old brother of Ali Saad Dawashba were also severely injured in the arson attack on their home in the West Bank village of Duma south of Nablus.
Israeli settlers reportedly smashed the windows of two homes in the village before throwing flammable liquids and Molotov cocktails inside, killing the infant who was trapped inside the house.
An Israeli doctor said Friday that the mother, Reham, was in critical condition, with third-degree burns covering 90 percent of her body, while the father, Saad, had burns across 80 percent of his body and four-year-old Ahmed across 60 percent of his body.
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has condemned the attack as “terrorism in every respect” and vowed to spare no effort in bringing the perpetrators to justice.
However, Ahmed al-Majdalani, a PLO executive committee member, said on Saturday that Israeli settlers would not have the courage to carry out these sorts of criminal acts if not for the support of the Israeli authorities.
He said that by condemning the arson attack, the Israeli authorities were trying to exonerate the Israeli government and make it seem an isolated incident.
Israeli settlers have carried out at least 120 attacks on Palestinians in occupied East Jerusalem and the West Bank since the start of 2015, according to the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs.
Such attacks are often referred to as “price-tag” attacks, carried out against local Palestinians in retribution perceived action against the Jewish-only settlement enterprise throughout the occupied West Bank and East Jerusalem.
The US State Department’s 2013 Country Reports on Terrorism included price-tag attacks for the first time, and said such attacks were “largely unprosecuted.”
According to the Israeli human rights group Yesh Din, only 1.9 percent of complaints submitted by Palestinians against Israeli civilian attacks result in a conviction. (T/P010/R04)
Mi’raj Islamic News Agency (MINA)