IDF troops fire at settlement security guards after mistaking them for rock-throwers

Military tells public broadcaster that the soldiers immediately halted their fire after realizing mistake in incident near Ofra

Illustrative: Israeli troops conduct searches in the West Bank, October 12, 2022. (Israel Defense Forces)
Illustrative: Israeli troops conduct searches in the West Bank, October 12, 2022. (Israel Defense Forces)

IDF troops fired at security guards from a West Bank settlement this week after mistakenly identifying them as Palestinian rock-throwers, Israeli television reported Friday.

According to the Kan public broadcaster, soldiers at a post near Ofra received a report that Palestinians were hurling rocks at Israeli vehicles on the main highway running through the West Bank.

The troops then saw two figures on the side of the road who they believed to be throwing rocks and then radioed in for permission to open fire, but got no answer, the report said.

A minute later, one of the soldiers then fired toward the unidentified pair in apparent contravention of the IDF’s live-fire protocols, while his commander shot in the air twice after approaching them.

The two figures were later identified as security guards from Ofra. The military told Kan in response that the soldiers immediately stopped firing upon being told on the radio who the two were.

No one was hurt in the incident and no damage was caused.

A picture taken on October 14, 2020 shows a partial view of the Israeli settlement of Ofra on the eastern outskirts of Ramallah in the West Bank. (AHMAD GHARABLI / AFP)

The IDF said it was investigating the incident, which came amid a months-long surge in violence in the West Bank.

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