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Britain sanctions 4 'extremist' Israeli settlers for West Bank violence against Palestinians

Palestinian Wadha Nawaagah pours water for her goats in the village of Susya in the south Hebron hills, West Bank, June 17, 2012. Britain on Monday sanctioned four "extremist" Israeli settlers for violence against Palestinians in the West Bank. File Photo by Debbie Hill/UPI
Palestinian Wadha Nawaagah pours water for her goats in the village of Susya in the south Hebron hills, West Bank, June 17, 2012. Britain on Monday sanctioned four "extremist" Israeli settlers for violence against Palestinians in the West Bank. File Photo by Debbie Hill/UPI | License Photo

Feb. 12 (UPI) -- The British government on Monday sanctioned a group of "extremist" Israeli settlers who it said have violently attacked Palestinians in the West Bank.

British Foreign Secretary David Cameron announced the sanctions against Moshe Sharvit, Yinon Levi, Zvi Bar Yousef and Ely Federman who he said joined other extremist settlers in targeting and attacking Palestinian civilians and therefore "undermining security and stability for both Israelis and Palestinians."

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"Today's sanctions place restrictions on those involved in some of the most egregious abuses of human rights. We should be clear about what is happening here. Extremist Israeli settlers are threatening Palestinians, often at gunpoint and forcing them off land that is rightfully theirs," Cameron said. "This behavior is illegal and unacceptable. Israel must also take stronger action and put a stop to settler violence. Too often, we see commitments made and undertakings given, but not followed through."

Officials said settler Levy, who was previously sanctioned by the United States earlier this month, and Sharvit, have used physical violence against displaced Palestinians, while Yosef set up an illegal outpost to harass Palestinians and Federman was involved with "multiple incidents" against Palestinian shepherds in South Hebron Hills.

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As part of the sanctions, all four will face strict financial and travel restrictions.

British officials said the Israeli government's failure to take action has left the settled to attack Palestinians with "near total impunity" in the West Bank.

Yesh Din, an Israel-based non-governmental organization, accused Israeli settlers this past weekend of throwing stones car the cars of Palestinians and tear-gassing drivers.

"The measures taken today are part of wider U.K. efforts to support a more stable West Bank, which is vital for the peace and security of both Palestinians and Israelis," the office said.

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