BRUSSELS — The EU urged Israel Friday to show “zero tolerance” for settler violence after an arson attack blamed on settlers in the West Bank left a Palestinian toddler dead.
“The Israeli authorities should … take resolute measures to protect the local population. We call for full accountability, effective law enforcement and zero tolerance for settler violence,” a spokesperson for EU foreign affairs head Federica Mogherini said in a statement.
“The cold-blooded killing of Palestinian toddler Ali Dawabsha, presumably by extremist settlers … highlights the urgent need for a political solution of the Palestinian-Israeli conflict,” it added.
Netanyahu called the firebombing in the village of Duma near the northern city of Nablus “an act of terrorism in every respect” and ordered security forces to hunt down those responsible.
Two homes in the Palestinian village were set alight in the early hours of Friday, and the Hebrew words “Revenge” and “Long live the king messiah” were spray-painted on their walls, alongside a Star of David.
Eighteen-month-old Ali Saad Dawabsha was killed in the blaze at his home. The infant’s parents, as well as his 4-year-old brother, were all injured and evacuated to the hospital. They were said to be in moderate-to-serious condition, with burns on large parts of their bodies.
The EU said it too wanted a full and prompt investigation to bring the perpetrators of this terrible crime to justice.
“Acts like this terrible attack can easily lead to a spiral of violence and bring both sides further away from a negotiated solution, the statement said. “The EU reiterates its strong opposition to Israel’s settlement policy that seriously threatens the two-state solution.”
Mogherini recently announced she was working on an idea for an “international support group” which would include Arab states so as to get Israeli-Palestinian peace talks back on track after they stalled completely last year.
Mogherini has repeatedly urged Israel and the Palestinians to resume peace negotiations, saying the situation on the ground cannot continue and it is a delusion to believe otherwise.
Times of Israel staff contributed to this report