Israeli Occupation Forces (IOF) committed another extra-judicial execution crime yesterday evening . The victim was Nehad Khaled Abu Ghanem, 33 years old from the village of Barqeen, west of Jenin. He died after sustaining several gunshot wounds in the upper body. IOF troops chased him and fired at him from close range, killing him instantly.
Initial investigations by PCHR and eyewitness accounts indicate that at 16:30 in the afternoon of Sunday the 16 of October Nehad Khaled Abu Ghanem (33) was driving a black “Citroen” on his way from Qabatya to his home village, Barqeen. When Nehad reached the Martyrs’ Triangle intersection off the Jenin – Nablus road, he noticed a number of Israeli military jeeps around the intersection. He may have thought that he had been ambushed. He drove his car towards the southwestern entrance of Martyrs Triangle village, about 200 meters away from the jeeps. IOF soldiers noticed him and gave chase. Nehad drove away quickly and accidentally hit the wall of a house. The car stopped completely. Several soldiers got out of their jeeps and surrounded Nehad. They opened fire at him from close range while he was in the car. He died instantly.
A Palestinian Red Crescent ambulance transported Nehad’s body to “Martyr Dr. Khalil Suliman” governmental hospital in Jenin. After examination, medical sources in the hospital announced that Nehad was hit by 6 bullets in the mouth, head, chest, and abdomen.
Eyewitnesses reported that the IOF troops could have easily detained Nehad without being exposed to any danger. However, IOF did not make the arrest due to their premeditated intent to kill.
This crime comes one week after the Israeli newspaper, Haaretz, published on 9 October, that IOF announced a reduction in detention operations against “key wanted activists” in the West Bank who are expected to resist arrest. IOF claimed that Nehad had been “wanted” since his release from Israeli jails 9 months ago. He served a four and a half years sentence for membership in Al-Quds Brigades, the military wing of Islamic Jihad.
PCHR views with great concern the continued escalation by the Israeli government and IOF in the Occupied Palestinian Territory (OPT). This incident is added to the list of ongoing Israeli violations of international humanitarian law and human rights law, including through extra-judicial executions. These incidents are further evidence that the Israeli government disregards international law and international humanitarian law. PCHR affirms that the extra-judicial execution policy adopted by the Israeli government threatens to drag the region into a new cycle of violence. PCHR calls upon the international community to break its silence regarding these and other incidents. The Centre renews its demand to the High Contracting Parties of the Fourth Geneva Convention to fulfill their obligations and guarantee the right to protection for Palestinian civilians in the OPT.