Riots erupt outside dead prisoner’s West Bank village
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Riots erupt outside dead prisoner’s West Bank village

Hundreds of Palestinians clash with army in and around Hebron; two Palestinians, one IDF soldier injured

Ilan Ben Zion, a reporter at the Associated Press, is a former news editor at The Times of Israel. He holds a Masters degree in Diplomacy from Tel Aviv University and an Honors Bachelors degree from the University of Toronto in Near and Middle Eastern Civilizations, Jewish Studies, and English.

A Palestinian protester uses a slingshot to hurl back a tear gas canister fired by Israeli security forces during clashes next to Ofer prison, near the West Bank city of Ramallah, on February 22, 2013. (photo credit: Issam Rimawi/Flash90)
A Palestinian protester uses a slingshot to hurl back a tear gas canister fired by Israeli security forces during clashes next to Ofer prison, near the West Bank city of Ramallah, on February 22, 2013. (photo credit: Issam Rimawi/Flash90)

Hundreds of Palestinians on Sunday clashed with Israeli security forces in the village outside Hebron that was home to the Palestinian prisoner who died Saturday.

The protesters hurled rocks at soldiers outside Si’ir, and the soldiers responded with crowd dispersal methods. The troops attempted to prevent the protesters from reaching Route 60, the main artery connecting Hebron to Bethlehem and Jerusalem.

Arafat Shalish Shahin Jaradat, 30, died of an apparent heart attack Saturday afternoon in Megiddo Prison, according to Prison Services spokeswoman Sivan Weizman.

Clashes between rioters and IDF security forces raged for hours across the West Bank, and at several locations in and around the city of Hebron.

Another 100 Palestinian protesters stoned soldiers and burned tires near the police checkpoint in Hebron. One soldier was lightly injured by a rock that struck him.

In the town of Halhul, just outside Hebron, approximately 500 Palestinians took part in a peaceful procession, Israel Radio reported. Several dozen Palestinians rioted near al-Aroub and threw stones and Molotov cocktails at IDF soldiers. One man was hit in the leg by IDF fire and lightly injured. Three hundred protesters massed near Beit Umar, but Israel Police pushed them back. Approximately 700 Palestinians protested and clashed with soldiers in Beit Anun. IDF troops pushed them back into the village and prevented them from advancing to Route 60. Channel 10 reported that one of the Palestinians was lightly wounded by a rubber bullet.

The IDF said its security forces were on high alert throughout the West Bank. Coordinator of Government Activities in the Territories Maj.-Gen. Eitan Dangot held several phone conversations with Palestinian Authority Prime Minister Salam Fayyad, urging him to do everything possible to lower the flames.

Thousands of Palestinian security prisoners announced the start of a hunger strike Sunday to protest Jaradat’s death.

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