West Bank violence escalates as another Palestinian teenager shot dead by Israeli forces

Mahmoud Abu Sa'an was shot in the head in Tulkarm

Mourners carry the body of Mahmoud Abu Sa'an, a Palestinian who was killed in an Israeli raid in the Israeli-occupied West Bank. Reuters
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An 18-year-old Palestinian was shot dead on Friday by Israeli forces during a raid in the occupied West Bank, the Palestinian Health Ministry said.

Hundreds of mourners gathered for the funeral of Mahmoud Abu Sa'an, whose head was shrouded in the Palestinian flag as his body was paraded through the town's streets ahead of the burial, AFP reported.

Tensions between the two sides recently escalated significantly, resulting in the deadliest violence in years.

The health ministry said Mahmoud Abu Sa'an was shot in the head in Tulkarm, during what the official Palestinian news agency Wafa said was a military operation in a nearby refugee camp that led to confrontations with Palestinians.

The Israeli army said that while forces were patrolling "suspects fired and hurled explosives and stones at the soldiers, who responded with live fire".

"Hits were identified," the statement added, specifying that no soldiers were hurt.

About 40,700 Palestinians are registered with the United Nations agency for Palestinian refugees in two camps in the Tulkarm area. They are refugees, or their descendants, who were forced from or fled their homes during the 1948 war at the time of Israel's creation.

The killings are the latest casualties in almost daily raids by Israel that have been taking place throughout the West Bank this year.

Soldiers shot at suspects who fired and hurled explosives and stones at troops operating around the northern West Bank city of Tulkarm, the Israeli military said. One person was hit but Israel reported no injuries to its forces.

During the past 15 months, violence in the West Bank has increased as Israel increases its raids, Palestinians launch street attacks and Jewish settlers attack Palestinian villages.

Hamas, which governs blockaded Gaza, mourned Abu Sa'an but did not claim him as a member. "Our people will continue their revolution until the occupation ends," it said in a statement.

In a 1967 Middle East war Israel occupied the West Bank, along with other territories the Palestinians want for an independent state. Israel has continued to build Jewish settlements there, which most countries consider illegal.

Updated: August 04, 2023, 10:55 AM