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“Unrestrained: West Bank Palestinians Confronted by Rising Tensions and Settler Violent outbursts in Gaza Conflict

The conflict between Israel and Palestine has been ongoing since 1948 and has only pushed the two groups further apart, as each recent incident devolves into more violence and dispute. Specifically, Palestinian residents of the West Bank have continually borne the brunt of this struggle, with the recent military conflict between Israel and Gaza representing the latest instance of hardship. Over the last few weeks, many Palestinians living in the West Bank have had to confront even more restrictions as Israel has clamped down on their communities. Jews settlers living in the area have also become increasingly violent towards Palestinian residents, provoking incursions on both sides. In the past, farmers and shepherds have had to wear military guards while tending to their lands to avoid harassment, leading to disruption of their business. This situation has been further exacerbated by the recent escalation of the Gaza conflict, as Israeli forces continue their air attacks on Gaza. Due to Palestinians attempting to demonstrate their support for Gaza, Israel has responded by increasing security measures in the area, conducting more intrusive and frequent checkups at checkpoints. In addition, the use of rubber bullets, stun grenades, and skunk water by Israeli forces has become far more commonplace, leading to injures and occasional deaths of Palestinian civilians. The impact of this unrest in the West Bank cannot be understated, as Palestinian families struggle to meet the basic necessities of life. Agricultural land is becoming increasingly difficult to access, and the movement of goods and people to and from Palestinian towns is heavily controlled. As a result, access to education, healthcare, and other basic services is greatly hindered, and most Palestinians lack the ability to earn a livable wage. It is clear that the quickly deteriorating situation in the West Bank is due to an intensification of tension between Israel and Palestine. Beyond merely responding to the conflict in Gaza, Israel is attempting to suppress the civilian population of the West Bank in order to further control the region. The result of these measures has been a tremendous burden placed on the innocent Palestinian residents of the West Bank, as they suffer from the measures of a conflict not their own. If international attention and recognition is not given to these human rights violations, this development will unfortunately only continue.