Video: Did Israeli soldier plant knife on teen killed by settler?

This article contains graphic images of violence. It has been updated since initial publication.

A video published on Facebook by Youth Against Settlements shows the moments after an Israeli settler shot dead a Palestinian teenager in Hebron on Saturday.

At 12 seconds into the video, one soldier hands off an object to another soldier, who appears to drop it by the body.

The video has raised suspicions that the soldiers planted a knife.

This came on a day when five Palestinians were killed by Israeli occupation forces, raising the death toll since the start of the month to more than 40.

The settler who reportedly killed the youth is seen in the video walking around with his handgun still drawn.

Ma’an News Agency has identified the youth as 18-year-old Fadil Qawasmi.

The shooting took place in central Hebron’s Shuhada Street.

“Palestinians may only access the street by passing through an Israeli military checkpoint with a metal detector,” Ma’an notes, “raising suspicions among locals as to whether Qawasmi could have been carrying a knife at the time of the alleged attack.”

Ma’an reported that local resident Mufid Sharabati said that the settler shot the youth near the Israeli settlement of Beit Hadassah.

Sharabati added, according to Ma’an, that “paramedics of the Palestinian Red Crescent arrived but Israeli soldiers didn’t allow them to access the young man. The soldiers then covered the young man’s face then took him in an ambulance to unknown destination.”

Sharabati’s home was later raided by Israeli occupation forces and a computer, mobile phones and cameras were confiscated, according to Wattan TV.

Israeli spin

Israeli army spokesperson Peter Lerner attempted to do damage control as the video spread.

In a post on Twitter, Lerner claimed that the object passed between the soldiers was a radio, used to report the incident.

Careful viewing of the video shows that what appears to be a radio is passed between one soldier and the officer standing by Qawasmi’s body at about 8 seconds. But around 12 seconds another item is passed between the soldiers, and one of the soldiers leans forward as if dropping an object by the body.

Killings continue

Hebron witnessed the killing of two more Palestinian youths on Saturday.

The first was 17-year-old Bayan Ayman Abd al-Hadi al-Esseili.

Local activist Raed Atrash told Wattan TV that eyewitnesses had seen Israeli forces fire three shots at Bayan at close range and then barred medical teams from aiding her.

Israeli occupation forces claimed that she had tried to stab an Israeli soldier close to the the Wadi al-Ghrus area near the Kiryat Arba settlement, according to Ma’an News Agency.

On Saturday, 16-year-old Mutaz Ahmad Uweisat was shot dead by Israeli police for allegedly attempting to stab an officer near the settlement of Armon Hanatziv in the West Bank near occupied East Jerusalem.

Ma’an News Agency reported that Israeli occupation forces had raided and searched the child’s family home and detained several members of his family.

No Israelis were injured in these alleged attacks.

Wattan TV said that Mutaz was from Jerusalem’s Jabal al-Mukabir neighborhood.

This picture of the teen has circulated on social media:

On Saturday evening, Tariq Ziyad al-Natshe was fatally shot in Hebron near the entrance to Shuhada Street. Wattan TV said he was 20 years old.

Israel claimed he had “moderately wounded” one its occupation soldiers. Al-Natshe was left without medical aid for more than 40 minutes before he was taken away by an Israeli ambulance.

Haaretz reported that al-Natshe died of his injuries in hospital.

Eyewitnesses told local media that Israeli settlers blocked the path of the ambulance and then distributed sweets to other settlers in apparent celebration.

Earlier in the day Palestinian residents of the area near Shuhada Street said they saw a group of settlers headed by Anat Cohen, a notorious extremist, distributing sweets to celebrate the killing of Qawasmi.

Also on Saturday evening, 23-year-old Amr Muhammad al-Faqih was shot dead at Qalandiya checkpoint north of Jerusalem, Israel again claiming he had attempted to stab one of its occupation soldiers, Wattan TV reported.

Summary executions

The deaths of five more Palestinians on Saturday brings to more than 40 the number of Palestinians killed in intensified violence since 1 October.

On Friday, three Palestinians were killed by Israeli forces during anti-occupation demonstrations in the West Bank and Gaza Strip.

A fourth Palestinian was shot dead after injuring an Israeli occupation soldier in Hebron.

A Palestinian who had been critically wounded one week earlier also died in Gaza.

Seven Israelis have died in recent violence.

Many Palestinians appear to have been killed according to an Israeli policy to extrajudicially execute them on mere suspicion or accusation they were carrying out an attack.

None of the Israeli Jews who have stabbed Palestinians, or stabbed other Israeli Jews mistaking them for Palestinians, have been summarily executed.

In a reflection of the dangers Palestinians face, a Palestinian citizen of Israel was arrested for allegedly having knives and an Islamic Movement flag in his car.

Yahya Masarwa was says he was beaten and abused by police who threatened to kill him. Authorities later released him after it became clear that he was carrying work tools.

Revenge demolitions

On Thursday, Israel delivered an additional four demolition orders to families of Palestinians it alleges took part in attacks on Israelis.

Under accelerated procedures, a family is given 72 hours to evacuate their home before it is demolished.

Israel’s aggressive use of revenge demolitions is reserved exclusively for Palestinians.

Family members of Israeli Jews who kill or injure Palestinians are never subjected to such collective punishment.

Thousands injured

In a statement, the Gaza-based Palestinian Centre for Human Rights today condemned “in the strongest terms how the Israeli forces and police have continued to shed the Palestinian blood in the occupied Palestinian territory, especially in occupied East Jerusalem.”

Israel has escalated its repression of Palestinians who live under its military occupation, especially in East Jerusalem, which remains under lockdown.

On Saturday, 37 Palestinians were injured in Gaza, 14 with live ammunition fired across the boundary by Israeli forces, Wattan TV said, citing medical sources.

The Palestine Red Crescent Society says it has treated more than 5,000 Palestinians with conflict-related injuries since the beginning of the month.

These include 530 Palestinians shot with live ammunition, 1,250 shot with rubber-coated steel bullets and more than 3,000 people who suffered the effects of tear gas.

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Comments

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Thanks for reporting this very important story. My heart aches for the family of this boy. But apart from grieving, we need to press for further details and pound them into the press. Who is this settler? What was he doing on Shuhada Street, with a pistol, during Sabbath prayers (as he apparently was)? How many shots were fired at the boy? Are there witnesses? Is the IDF claiming the boy had a knife? If so, where and when did they find it? Can his movements be traced through the nearby checkpoint -- and if so, how could he have carried a knife through the metal detector? This sort of incident just might help to expose the activities of these "settlements" for what they are.

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I agree entirely. Unfortunately, none of the mainstream press will actually report what's happening in the occupied areas.

And I want to know why.

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This is important reporting - the mainstream media in the USA has been covering the current uprising out of context of the Occupation and hardships endured by Palestinians in their daily lives. Reports use language such as, "in Israel, a Palestinian stabbed a mother. . .", creating a good/Israel and bad/Palestinian story to the less-than-well-informed American audience. More inclusive coverage, such as this, is integral to the whole story getting out. Good work, Ali.

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It seems that the settler is part of IDF, moving freely with his handgun, carrying it in an absolutely unprofessional manner. It is obvious, that this is a colonial situation, the soldiers supporting the settler without any question.

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Are these goons so thick, it doesn't cross their twisted minds truth will out? Or is it a case of no such thing as 'law' for Palestinians, unless its to lock them up and throw away the key?

Ali Abunimah

Ali Abunimah's picture

Co-founder of The Electronic Intifada and author of The Battle for Justice in Palestine, now out from Haymarket Books.

Also wrote One Country: A Bold-Proposal to End the Israeli-Palestinian Impasse. Opinions are mine alone.