15 Palestinians shot, one badly hurt, in West Bank protest

IDF says 300 protesters threw stones, Molotov cocktails at soldiers; in separate incident, IED lobbed at Rachel’s Tomb

Palestinian protesters near the West bank city of Ramallah, November 30, 2013 (photo credit: Issam RImawi/Flash90)
Palestinian protesters near the West bank city of Ramallah, November 30, 2013 (photo credit: Issam RImawi/Flash90)

Palestinian medics and security sources reported Friday that Israeli soldiers shot and wounded 15 Palestinians near the West Bank town of Ramallah during a protest over the killing of a teenager.

One of the injured was reportedly shot in the neck and was in serious condition, according to Israel Radio.

The IDF said that approximately 300 Palestinians had gathered in the area, with many throwing stones and Molotov cocktails at soldiers. The army said it used crowd dispersal methods to break up the rally.

Palestinians sources said that protesters were hit by live rounds and rubber bullets on the outskirts of Jalazun refugee camp, with the injured later hospitalized in Ramallah.

The demonstration was called to protest the death Wednesday of Mohammed Mubarak, a 19-year-old from Jalazun working on a project funded by USAID and son of the camp’s locally elected leader. The army said he was shot dead near a Jewish settlement outside Ramallah after having opened fire at them, but witnesses insisted he was unarmed.

Palestinian housing and public works minister Maher Ghneim condemned what he branded the “cold-blooded killing” of a labourer who was working on a project run by the ministry in coordination with USAID.

Ghneim said the youth had been “carrying a sign to direct the traffic” when he was shot.

Also on Friday, the IDF detained two Palestinians who arrived at the entrance of the West Bank settlement of Nahliel and began setting off fireworks. Authorities say one of the men was armed with a knife measuring 10 centimeters (4 inches) in length.

In a separate incident, an improvised explosive device was lobbed at Rachel’s Tomb on the outskirts of Bethlehem. Authorities were searching the area for suspects.

Palestinian sources in the Gaza Strip said that at least four people were injured by IDF fire on Friday.

According to the IDF, dozens of Palestinian protesters entered the no man’s land near the Israeli-Gazan border and began tampering with the border fence. The army attempted to break up the rally with conventional crowd dispersal methods, but when those didn’t work, soldiers reportedly fired on two of the protesters.

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