London [UK], February 13 (ANI): The United Kingdom on Monday announced new sanctions on the four extremist Israeli settlers, who committed alleged human rights abuses against Palestinian communities in the West Bank, UK foreign secretary said in an official statement.

According to the statement, the decision was taken after an unprecedented increase in violence by extremist settlers in the West Bank over the past year.

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"There have been unprecedented levels of violence by extremist settlers in the West Bank over the past year. Some residents of illegal Israeli settlements and outposts have used harassment, intimidation and violence to put pressure on Palestinian communities to leave their land," read the statement.

"Two of the individuals designated today--Moshe Sharvit and Yinon Levy--have in recent months used physical aggression, threatened families at gunpoint, and destroyed property as part of a targeted and calculated effort to displace Palestinian communities. One illegal outpost, set up by Zvi Bar Yosef, has been described by local Palestinian residents as a "source of systematic intimidation and violence," it added.

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The new measures include strict financial and travel restrictions.

"These sanctions follow the announcement by the Foreign Secretary in December that the UK plans to ban those responsible for settler violence from entering the UK to make sure our country cannot be a home for people who commit these unacceptable acts," the statement read.

Foreign Secretary David Cameron alleged that these Israeli settlers are threatening Palestinians and forcing them to leave their lands at gunpoint, adding that the violence is 'illegal' and 'unacceptable'.

"Today's sanctions place restrictions on those involved in some of the most egregious abuses of human rights. We should be clear about what is happening here. Extremist Israeli settlers are threatening Palestinians, often at gunpoint, and forcing them off land that is rightfully theirs. This behaviour is illegal and unacceptable. Israel must also take stronger action and put a stop to settler violence. Too often, we see commitments made and undertakings given, but not followed through," he said.

"Extremist settlers, by targeting and attacking Palestinian civilians, are undermining security and stability for both Israelis and Palestinians," he added. (ANI)

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