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Hilltop youth accused of attacking troops with beehive during outpost demolition

Residents claim beekeeper was only trying to take hive with him when they accidentally got loose, but security forces say it was hurled at them

Jacob Magid is The Times of Israel's US correspondent based in New York

Illustrative: Border Police carry away a member of the "hilltop youth" during an evacuation of an illegal outpost in the northern West Bank. (Credit: Zman Emet, Kan 11)
Illustrative: Border Police carry away a member of the "hilltop youth" during an evacuation of an illegal outpost in the northern West Bank. (Credit: Zman Emet, Kan 11)

A young settler hurled a beehive at security forces during the demolition of an illegal tent in a central West Bank outpost on Thursday morning, a security official told The Times of Israel.

Border Police officers and inspectors from the Civil Administration — the Defense Ministry body that authorizes West Bank construction — were stung repeatedly as a result.

While the security official insisted that the hive was thrown at the forces, police in a statement said the young beekeeper carried the hive over to the forces and carelessly placed it on the ground, causing the bees to escape and swarm the troops.

A statement released to the media that was attributed to the hilltop youth residents of the agricultural outpost near the Rimonim settlement insisted that the young beekeeper had picked up the hive to bring with him as the teens were being ordered to evacuate the premises.

Illustrative: A farmer works on his beehives at a farm on a small hill near the settlement of Almog in the West Bank, on May 28, 2019 (MENAHEM KAHANA / AFP)

“Likely due to the rapid movement of the hive and also because it was daytime, the bees flew out,” the statement said, noting that one of the outpost residents was also stung as a result.

The statement also criticized the security officials for taking a settler’s sweater and burning it in order to shoo away the bees.

Police said in a statement that they had no choice but to take items found thrown on the ground and burn them to use the smoke to disperse the hundreds of bees.

The man responsible for letting them loose was arrested on charges of assaulting police officers, law enforcement added.

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