Levin, who was the general of the Israeli army’s northern command, compared the situation in the West Bank to the “apartheid” regime in South Africa, where the rights of black citizens are ignored.
“(West Bank) There has been no democracy here for 57 years. There is total apartheid. The Israeli army, driven to dominate here, is rotting from within. Settlers stand by and watch as they attack (Palestinians) and become complicit in this war crime.” he said.
Comparing what happened in the occupied West Bank to Nazi Germany, Levin said that “there are streets in Hebron, where only Jews are allowed, and Arabs are prohibited from walking.”
3 settler violence in one day in the occupied West Bank
In the coalition government established by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu at the end of 2022 in Israel, names such as Bezalel Smotrich and Itamar Ben-Gvir, who are known for their racist actions and discourses against Palestinians, and supporters of Jewish settlers, were appointed to critical ministries.
In this period when the far-right is in power, especially in Palestinian villages in the occupied West Bank; There has been an increase in mass attacks by Jewish settlers in which vehicles and houses are set on fire, shootings are opened, Palestinians are killed or injured.
The Israeli military has been criticized for protecting settlers against the Palestinians who were attacked during these attacks.
According to data shared by Jens Laerke, Spokesperson of the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA), 149 of the 591 incidents in which Jewish settlers attacked Palestinians in the first 6 months of the year resulted in injury or death to Palestinians.
The OCHA Spokesperson stated that this corresponds to approximately 99 incidents per month, with a 39 percent increase in attacks compared to last year.
Israel’s military occupation of the West Bank, which started in 1967, continued until the establishment of the Palestinian Authority, following the Oslo Agreement signed with the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) in 1993, and the “Palestine Autonomous Administration” system began to be implemented in these regions as per the agreement.
According to the agreement, after the end of the transition period in 1999, the independent Palestinian state was to be established and Israel had to end its occupation of the West Bank and Gaza Strip.
However, Israel did not fulfill its responsibilities and sought to further strengthen the illegal Jewish Settlements in the West Bank. Palestinians in the occupied West Bank have been living under the military rule of the Israeli army for nearly 57 years.