An Israeli human rights organization records hundreds of settler attacks on Palestinians without deterrence

An Israeli human rights organization records hundreds of settler attacks on Palestinians without deterrence Covering nearly 400 years A Palestinian researcher documents the work of the Jerusalem Sharia Court

An Israeli human rights organization records hundreds of settler attacks on Palestinians without deterrence


The Israeli human rights organization B'Tselem said that it had documented 451 attacks by Jewish settlers against Palestinians from the beginning of 2020 to mid-2021, most of which the Israeli forces did not intervene to prevent.

The organization stated, in a 40-page report, that in 66% of the attacks by settlers in the occupied West Bank against Palestinians, Israeli forces did not go to the site of the incident.

In total, soldiers came to the site in 183 attacks, including 170 in which they did nothing or participated in the attacks on the side of the settlers, the organization said.

In only 13 cases, said Dror Sadot, a spokeswoman for the NGO, the army "intervened against settlers in order to "prevent acts of violence".

The organization's report said that "the settlers are practicing their violence with the full support of the state that provides it and its representatives participating in its implementation, as part of the strategy of the Israeli apartheid (apartheid) regime that seeks to annex more and more Palestinian lands to complete the ongoing process of appropriation."

Israel, which has occupied the West Bank since 1967, rejects accusations of apartheid against the Palestinians.

The organization spoke of 5 examples in different parts of the West Bank that witnessed violent settlers' control of more than 2,800 hectares of land.

She referred to the case of the Ma'on farm, which was established illegally in the southern West Bank, but now, with another sub-outpost, controls about 264 hectares, including pasture roads used by Palestinian residents of the area.

The organization quoted the shepherd, Juma'a Rabiei, 48, from the Palestinian Al-Tuwani area, as saying that the settlers' attacks are pushing him to leave the agriculture on which his family used to live.

He said that settlers attacked him severely in 2018, and the organization quoted him as saying, "They broke my leg, and I had to spend two weeks in the hospital, and continue my treatment at home." "I had to sell most of my livestock to cover the costs of treatment," he said.

About half a million Israelis have moved to settlements in the West Bank that the international community considers mostly illegal.

Some outposts, including the Maon Farm, are illegal under Israeli law, but the government has been slow or unwilling to evacuate them.


Covering nearly 400 years A Palestinian researcher documents the work of the Jerusalem Sharia Court


In the records of the Sharia court in Jerusalem, the sailor can live the details of a long time period. The records used to document until the holidays, saying that today is a holiday and the court did not record anything during it, and through it one can see human behavior, customs and traditions as if the reader lived in that era.

Bethlehem - Al-Quds Sharia Court is the second after the Greater Istanbul Court, which is working on archiving records dating back to the time of the Ottoman Empire, which ruled Palestine for nearly 400 years, according to Professor Ibrahim Rabaya, professor of the history of Jerusalem in the Ottoman era at Al-Quds Open University.

This was one of a group of Sharia courts in Palestine, such as the court of Nablus, the court of Hebron, the court of Jaffa, the court of Haifa and others, and it is part of a similar series that spread throughout the Ottoman Empire.

Daily archive
But what distinguishes the Shari’a Court of Jerusalem, according to Raba’a, is that it keeps its entire archive sequentially, on a daily basis, from 1550 until 1917.

Prof. Dr. Rabaya told AJ NEWS, "There are 1500 documents also found in court records from the Mamluk era, but when the Ottoman Empire came, especially during the reign of Sultan Suleiman the Magnificent, work began on archiving all state documents in a scientific way," and the Ottoman Empire has kept its archive since Its inception, which distinguishes it from the rest of the other major countries, including the United States and Britain.

Raba'a shows that the records of the Sharia Court of Jerusalem contained all the daily cases of social, economic, security events, appointments and others, and contained all the daily details of Muslims and other sects who lived in the city, such as Christians and Jews.

The records of the Sharia Court of Jerusalem were not damaged or attacked, as happened in Nablus or Hebron, for example, which witnessed periods of tension and waves of anger during which the courts were looted and burned, which did not happen in Jerusalem.

Historical details
In these records, the sailor can live in the details of a distant time period, says Rabay’ah, adding, “Even on holidays, he used to write in the records that today is a holiday, and that the court did not record anything about it.” In his belief, too, it is possible to see human behavior, customs and traditions "as if you were living in that era".

The researcher adds that the records are written and documented history, and conclusive evidence of the details of life, from which it is possible to identify the names of families and their development over the years, and even the names of regions and the origin of their names, which are suspected of Jewish origin, to discover that they are of Ottoman origin.

For example, Rabaia says that the names of the regions in Palestine were either indicative of a specific group that inhabited the site, or passed through it, or it was a geographical description of the place; Such as the town of Silwan, which is adjacent to the blessed Al-Aqsa Mosque, whose name at that time appears as "Lisan al-Wadi" because its geographical shape resembles the tongue.

Rabaiah studied these records for nearly 20 continuous years, and found that they are divided into two parts: the first in Arabic was for daily issues and transactions, and the second in the Ottoman language - in Arabic letters - and specialized in sultan issues or insignia, rulings of governors, and “Royal Patents”, that is, employment books that become Only effective if it is officially registered with court records.

Fadi Al-Asa/ Photos by A.  Dr..  Ibrahim Rabay’a while working on categorizing and archiving the records of the Jerusalem Sharia Court in his home in the town of Maythlon in the Jenin governorate in the north of the occupied West BankRabay'a re-archives the daily life documented in the records of the Sharia court in Jerusalem during the rule of the Ottoman Empire.

Records in the "microfilm"
Rabay'a also found that some records consisted of 260-420 pages, and the size of the paper was between 20-30 cm. In the early eighties, these records were microfilmed by Mahmoud Atallah, Professor of History at An-Najah National University, in cooperation with the Director of the Manuscript Center at the University of Jordan, Adnan Al-Bakhit.

The center rescheduled the records in more than 20 columns, and it was difficult for researchers to dive into them, while Rabaiah rescheduled the records in 4 columns, after hardly obtaining a microfilm reader.

The first column, as classified by the researcher, contains the page number and the judge's name, the second contains the number and date of the "argument/document", the third column explains the subject of the case, and the fourth column contains information, analyzes, and an explanation of some of its terms.

A Journey That Started With a PhD
Rabaya began archiving these records while preparing for a doctoral study on “Jerusalem in the 17th Century,” when he found that researchers had stopped completing their tabulation.

Rabaya completed his doctoral thesis, from Al-Nelain University in Sudan, in 2006, after which he completed his work in records from his home in the town of Maythaloun near Jenin (northern West Bank), to begin reclassifying and archiving the era between 1550-1598, with 37 records published in the Center. The Turkish “ARCICA”, affiliated with the Organization of Islamic Cooperation, and 5 records that it published before contracting with the center, and 7 records that are ready for publication.

Rabaia needs to work on each record between two to 4 months, and despite the cessation of funding his activity from the Turkish Center after the Corona pandemic, he never left these records, but rather browses them and works on tabulating, analyzing and archiving them, because he lives all the details of life daily in Jerusalem for 400 years.
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