In yet another Israel-Palestine violent clash, Israeli forces shot and killed one Palestinian teenager and injured nearly a hundred more.
This Friday, the area near Bethlehem in the occupied West Bank was the scene of another violent surge of Israeli forces against Palestinians.
During the clash between the Israeli soldiers and Palestinians there, one teenager was killed, at least one Palestinian was shot in the leg, and dozens sustained injuries from stun grenades, rubber-coated bullets and tear gas inhalation.
The exact whereabouts of the bloody clash was in the West Bank town of Huwara, near the city of Nablus, where Palestinians were protesting against expanding Jewish settlements.
In this regard, Mohammad Abdelhameed, a Huwara council member, told Reuters that “what is happening in Huwara is a provocation by the settlers. We hang the Palestinian flag, which is a symbol of our identity and it will remain raised as long as we are on this land. But Israeli security forces take it down.”
The move happened several times during the Friday protest, which is a flagrant violation of what Israel has agreed upon before. In other words, Israeli law does not ban the Palestinian flag to be risen or carried in Palestine. This is while Israeli police forces and soldiers regularly remove Palestinian flags from public areas.
In a statement criticizing Israel’s illegal moves, the Palestinian Foreign Ministry said that the killing was “part of a series of crimes and field executions carried out by the occupation forces”, adding that “locals were only protesting against expanding Jewish settlements and the confiscation of Palestinian land and they had every right to do so.”
Neither the Israeli military nor any other official did not immediately respond to a request for comment. A day after the surge, however, the Israeli military issued a statement, saying that several soldiers in the Al-Khader area of Bethlehem were conducting “routine security activity” in the area when “suspects hurled rocks and Molotov cocktails at the soldiers, endangering their lives.”
The family of the victim, Zaid Saeed Ghuneim, said the teenager had just finished dinner and was on his way to his grandparents’ house when he was shot.
“They put two bullets in his legs, two in his back and one in his neck. They assassinated him,” Zaid’s brother told CNN, adding that “he was my best friend. A lovely, peaceful boy who wanted to help everyone.”
This is the second killing of a minor by Israeli forces in less than a week in the West Bank. It was on this past Saturday that Palestinian teenager Amjad al-Fayed was killed in clashes during an Israeli raid in Jenin in the West Bank.
Tensions between Israeli security forces and Palestinians have been steadily rising across Israel and the Palestinian territories. Only in this past March, for example, the Israeli military carried out a series of attacks against Palestinians under the name of “Operation Breakwater.” During the operation, Israeli soldiers have been conducting nearly daily raids across the West Bank to arrest suspects.
Soldiers have since arrested dozens of West Bank residents and encountered violent resistance. According to the latest data from the Palestinian Ministry of Health since March, at least 55 Palestinians have died because of Operation Breakwater.
In response, Palestinians have also managed to kill 19 Israelis. And in one of the latest peaks of tension between Israeli forces and Palestinians, an Al Jazeera journalist was killed by the Israeli security forces while she was wearing a vest and a helmet clearly marked with the word “PRESS”.