PA: Palestinian baby dies from inhaling tear gas fired by IDF
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PA: Palestinian baby dies from inhaling tear gas fired by IDF

8-month-old boy was at home near Bethlehem when he died of asphyxiation, PA health ministry says; army investigating

An Israeli police vehicle drives in front of Palestinian protesters running away during clashes on October 13, 2015 in the West Bank city of Bethlehem. (AFP/MUSA AL-SHAER)
An Israeli police vehicle drives in front of Palestinian protesters running away during clashes on October 13, 2015 in the West Bank city of Bethlehem. (AFP/MUSA AL-SHAER)

An eight-month-old Palestinian baby died Friday from inhaling tear gas fired during violent clashes near the West Bank city of Bethlehem, the Palestinian health ministry said.

The ministry said Ramadan Muhammad Thawabteh died while he was in his home in the village of Beit Fajjar.

“Ramadan Thawabteh, eight months old, died from asphyxiation today after inhaling tear gas, fired by the Israeli army, that entered the house of his family,” a ministry spokesman said.

It was not immediately clear if a tear gas grenade had entered the house in the city of Bethlehem or if the gas had seeped in from outside.

The Israeli army said it was investigating the matter.

The incident came on a day of renewed violence in Israel, the West Bank and Gaza Strip that saw a return of terror attacks in Jerusalem.

Two Israelis were wounded in a stabbing at the Ammunition Hill light rail station in the capital on Friday afternoon; their attacker was shot and critically wounded. It was the first attack in Jerusalem since October 17, and the second of the day.

Hours earlier, a Palestinian was shot dead and another was wounded as they tried to stab two Border Police officers at Tapuah Junction in the West Bank. Also in the West Bank, two Palestinians were wounded in clashes with Border Police officers near the city of Ramallah.

In Gaza, dozens of Palestinians were also reported to have been hurt in clashes with Israeli security forces along the border fence with Israel.

This is not the first time in recent months that a Palestinian baby has been caught up in the conflict. In July, 18-month-old Ali Dawabsha was burned to death when suspected Jewish terrorists firebombed the family home in the West Bank village of Duma. His mother and father also later succumbed to their injuries caused by the ensuing blaze that gutted the house. Only 4-year-old Ahmad survived, and is being treated for severe burns in an Israeli hospital.

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