Hebron settlers pitch hut, claim contested house

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Associated Press

Posted on September 24, 2013 at 10:01 AM

Updated Tuesday, Sep 24 at 10:30 AM

HEBRON, West Bank (AP) — Israeli settlers have pitched a hut outside a contested house in the West Bank city of Hebron in a new claim to ownership.

Several hundred settlers live in the tense city of 170,000 Palestinians, who view each new settler bridgehead with alarm.

Wrangling over the house took a decisive turn this week when Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, responding to the fatal shooting of an Israeli soldier in Hebron, said settlers should be allowed into the house.

Israel's defense minister gave the go-ahead, though aide Ofer Harel said further approvals are needed before settlers can move in. Staking their claim Tuesday, settlers pitched a hut, or Sukkah, marking a Jewish holiday.

Nearby, Israeli soldiers fired stun grenades and rubber bullets at Palestinian stone throwers, a routine clash at times of tension.

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