Israeli prosecutors filed murder charges against two Jewish male citizens for a July 31 arson attack in the West Bank village of Duma that killed three members of a Palestinian family and severely burned a fourth, Israeli daily Haaretz reported. Two other Jewish males, one of them a minor, were charged with violence against Palestinians, according to the report.
The main accused, Amiram Ben Uliel, a 21-year-old, was charged with three counts of murder, two counts of attempted murder, two counts of arson and one count of conspiring to commit a nationalistically-motivated crime, reported Ynetnews, an Israeli English-language news website. A minor was charged as an accessory to murder in the same case.
The two suspects allegedly firebombed a house in Duma, and the resulting fire killed an 18-month-old immediately. His parents died of their injuries in the hospital later. A 4-year-old boy is the only survivor from the family and is still hospitalized. The attackers also spray-painted “Vengeance” and “long live the Messiah” on the burnt house and eyewitnesses saw four men fleeing into a nearby settlement.
There had been claims that the suspects had been tortured while in custody of Shin Bet, Israel’s security agency. Raz Nizri, the country’s deputy attorney-general, said Wednesday that such claims were “ridiculous and baseless,” the Jerusalem Post reported.
Data from the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs for up to Dec. 14 showed there were 220 cases of settler-related violence against Palestinians in 2015, 88 of them resulting in casualties.