Tensions flare after mosque in the West Bank is vandalized
On June 19, 2012 At 6:52 pm
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A mosque in the occupied West Bank was scorched and vandalized Monday night. Words reading, "The war has begun," were scrawled on the wall in Hebrew.
The mosque is located in an area where there are Israeli settlements near Palestinian villages. Locals accuse the nearby Israeli settlers of the vandalism.
"Attacks on places of worship are a provocation," Yousef Edes al Sheikh, head of the Shariah Court, told Al Jazeera reporters.
The Israeli supreme court had ruled that some buildings nearby are on private Palestinian land, and the settlers inside must leave. This has left some hard-liners from the Jewish community furious. They are threatening to oppose upcoming evacuations when troops arrive.
Even though it is the Israeli government that has ordered the evacuations, the settlers blame the Palestinians. Some say that attacks such as the mosque vandalism are the price Palestinians must pay for forcing them out.