Israel kills teen, disabled man in Gaza protests

Youths, one holding a Palestine flag, crouch behind a sand embankment with a fence separating them from an Israeli military vehicle and soldiers

Palestinian protesters confront Israeli soldiers during protests in eastern Khan Younis, southern Gaza, on 21 December.

Israeli occupation forces shot and killed three Palestinians, including a 16-year-old, during protests in the Gaza Strip on Friday.

The slain boy, identified as Muhammad Mouin al-Jahjouh, was shot in the neck.

Maher Atiyya Muhammad Yassin, a 40-year-old man with physical disabilities resulting from polio, was killed by a live bullet to the head. A photo of Yassin was published by Palestinian outlets following the announcement of his death:

Abd al-Aziz Abu Sharia, 28, died after being shot in the stomach:

Gaza’s health ministry said that 40 others were injured by live fire during protests along Gaza’s eastern perimeter on Friday, including two journalists and four paramedics.

Photojournalist Sami Misran was reported to have been hit by Israeli gunfire in the leg while covering Friday’s protests east of Bureij, central Gaza:

A camera belonging to The Electronic Intifada contributor Mohammed Asad was destroyed by an Israeli bullet during the protests.

This video shows smoke inside an ambulance after it was hit with a gas canister east of Gaza City:

Children killed

More than 175 Palestinians, including 35 children, have been killed during Great March of Return protests along Gaza’s boundary with Israel since their launch on 30 March.

The youngest among those killed was 4-year-old Ahmad Abu Abid, who died on 11 December after having been struck by shrapnel while being carried in his father’s arms four days earlier.

“Ahmad sustained injuries to his head, chest and abdomen which caused his death,” according to Defense for Children International Palestine.

“An MRI revealed that shrapnel had entered Ahmad’s brain through his eye,” the group added.

Journalist wearing helmet and flak jacket displays a badly damaged camera

Photojournalist Mohammed Asad displays his camera that was damaged by shrapnel while covering protests east of Gaza City on 21 December.

Mohammad Abu El-Sebah APA images

Israeli occupation forces have killed more than one Palestinian child per week on average during 2018.

Soldiers shot and killed Qasim Muhammad Ali al-Abbasi, 17, at a checkpoint near Ramallah, the seat of the Palestinian Authority in the occupied West Bank, on Thursday night.

The military claimed that it opened fire on a car that ran through a roadblock.

Surviving passengers in the car said that the group was attempting to reach Nablus when they realized they had accidentally turned onto a road leading to an Israeli settlement.

Muhammad Hani al-Abbasi told the Ma’an News Agency that as the group tried to get back to the main road, “we were chased by either Israeli soldiers or settlers, we could barely see as there were not enough lights and it was very dark.”

Muhammad added: “We were surrounded, they randomly opened fire at us, we did not stop, we kept going fast, the vehicle’s glass broke and the tires were punctured.”

Israeli soldiers forced the group out of the car and made them carry Qasim out of the vehicle.

Muhammad said that Qasim was kept on the ground for an hour before being transferred to an ambulance.

Qasim’s family in Silwan, a neighborhood in East Jerusalem, are demanding an investigation into the teen’s death, including an autopsy. Israel is withholding the boy’s body.

Israel is also withholding the body of Hamdan al-Arda, a 59-year-old businessman who was killed in the town of al-Bireh in the Ramallah area last week, not far from where Qasim al-Abbasi was shot.

Israel claimed that al-Arda was killed as he attempted to attack soldiers with his car but doubt was soon cast on that narrative.

An eyewitness told the Israeli daily Haaretz that al-Arda was taken by surprise by a large group of soldiers in the road as he was driving towards his aluminum import business, where the military was confiscating security cameras.

According to Haaretz, “When al-Arda approached in his car, the soldiers who were either outside the shop or suddenly exited the shop shouted at him, ‘Stop!,’ and aimed their rifles at him.

“Instead of braking, al-Arda pressed on the gas. The witness concluded that he was startled and therefore pressed down on the wrong pedal.”

Four soldiers opened fire simultaneously at al-Arda. The military did not allow Palestinian paramedics to approach al-Arda and his body was taken away in an armored vehicle.

Soldiers prevented medics from reaching teen

Israeli forces also prevented medics from treating Mahmoud Nakhla, an 18-year-old shot and killed in Jalazone refugee camp near Ramallah last week.

Nakhla was shot in the back by a soldier, according to a Palestinian investigator with the Israeli human rights group B’Tselem.

An eyewitness saw a soldier nudge Nakhla with his foot, “apparently to see if the teen was still alive,” Haaretz reported.

“They then pulled up his shirt and pulled down his pants, apparently to check whether the stone-throwing youth was a dangerous, booby-trapped terrorist.”

The soldiers carried away Nakhla by his hands and feet, ignoring pleas by Palestinian residents to provide access to the medics who had arrived to the scene.

Soldiers only allowed an ambulance to approach after 15 minutes, according to Haaretz.

“A video clip shows Nakhla raising one hand limply to the back of his neck, proof that he was still alive,” the paper reported. “Half-naked, he’s placed on a stretcher and put in the ambulance, which speeds off, its siren wailing, to the Government Hospital in Ramallah.”

The teen died on the way to the hospital. Nakhla died from “loss of blood after a bullet entered his lower back, struck his liver and hit a main artery, damaging other internal organs.”

Israel claimed that soldiers had fired at “a Palestinian holding a suspicious object.”

“Inconsistencies in the official Israeli narrative”

Both the businessman Hamdan al-Arda and the teen Mahmoud Nakhla were killed during a week of increased violence in the West Bank in which three additional Palestinians and two Israeli soldiers were killed.

A baby also died days after being born prematurely following the shooting of his mother at a bus stop near the Ofra settlement.

Days later, soldiers reportedly killed Salah Barghouti, a 29-year-old Palestinian suspected by Israel in the drive-by shooting in which the woman in her seventh month of pregnancy was critically wounded and six others were injured.

The Palestinian rights group Al-Haq stated this week that its documentation “indicates inconsistencies in the official Israeli narrative.”

Eyewitnesses and a rights group have said that Barghouti was alive when he was detained.

“The family has the right to be informed of the circumstances of [Barghouti’s] arrest and detention and possible death,” Al-Haq stated.

“The lack of evidence to the effect that he has been killed amounts to ill-treatment, collective punishment and enforced disappearance.”

Israel has named Salah Barghouti’s brother Asim as the gunman who killed two soldiers at the Givat Assaf outpost near Ramallah last week. He is also suspected of involvement in the shooting attack at Ofra.

Israeli forces raided the village of Kobar, where the Barghouti family lives, and took measurements in preparation for the demolition of the family’s home:

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My God! If an Israeli child were being killed every week by Hamas, Bibi would be launching an offensive and kill over a thousand people-he's done it before! I am so tired of the Palestinians being treated like their lives are not as valuable as anyone else's.

Maureen Clare Murphy

Maureen Clare Murphy's picture

Maureen Clare Murphy is the managing editor of The Electronic Intifada and lives in Chicago.