(Photo Credit: AFP)
Qatar’s Emir Sheikh Tamim Bin Hamad bin Khalifa Al-Thani on 13 March committed $500,000 to the families of the victims of the recent rampage in the town of Huwara in the occupied West Bank city of Nablus carried out by extremist Israeli settlers.
On the night of 26 February, Israeli settlers stormed the town of Huwara and proceeded to burn 75 homes, injuring nearly 400 Palestinians and killing one.
According to eyewitness reports, the Israeli military witnessed the violence but took no action to stop it. The Israeli military estimated that between 300 and 400 people participated in the pogrom.
The Huwara Municipality expressed its gratitude to the Secretary-General of the Palestinian Liberation Organization’s (PLO) Executive Committee and the Qatari Emir for facilitating the transfer of aid to the victims of the violent rampage.
The aid was initially presented to the Palestinian Deputy Minister of Civil Affairs, Ayman Qandil, and the Secretary of the Fatah Movement in the West Bank, Louay al-Saadi.
Qatar is one of the few Gulf states who have refused to consider normalization with Israel and has consistently criticized Tel Aviv for its brutal suppression of Palestinians. A few days prior, according to WAFA news agency, Doha condemned the Israeli occupation forces for its recent raid in Jenin, which resulted in the killing of six Palestinians.
In a statement, the Qatari foreign ministry considered the actions of the Israeli military against Palestinians as “an extension” of “systematic crimes.”
Following the pogrom-like rampage, EU and US officials issued statements of condemnation, and Washington and US-based Jewish groups considering denying Israel’s Finance Minister Bezalel Smotrich a visa ahead of his visit to the US for saying that the town of Huwara should be “wiped out.” However, on 10 March, the administration of US President Joe Biden granted Smotrich a US visa, neglecting domestic and international condemnations.
US State Department spokesperson Ned Price also previously condemned Smotrich’s remarks on Huwara, calling them “irresponsible, disgusting, and repugnant.”