Israeli forces kill Palestinian teenager during protest in occupied West Bank

Mohammed Hamayel, 15, was killed during a weekly protest in the village of Beita in the occupied West Bank against illegal Jewish settlement.

A Palestinian teenager was killed by Israeli gunfire during clashes between protesters and Israeli troops in the occupied West Bank, Palestinian authorities said.

The Palestinian Red Crescent said on Friday that “Mohammad Said Hamayel, 15, died in clashes” with Israeli forces near Beita, south of Nablus, where dozens of Palestinians demonstrated against the expansion of a nearby illegal Jewish settlement at the expense of their land.

The Palestinian health ministry said six other people were shot and wounded.

The official Palestinian news agency, Wafa, reported that Israeli troops fired live ammunition, tear gas and rubber-coated steel balls at the protesters. There was no immediate comment from the IDF.

Hamayel is the eighth Palestinian child to be killed by Israeli forces this year and the third in Beita, which has witnessed protests in recent months after Israeli settlers built an outpost on the village’s Mount Sabih.

The livelihoods of at least 17 Palestinian families – more than 100 people – are at risk as they depend on harvesting their olives on land they have owned for generations.

At another demonstration in the village of Kufr Qaddoum, an eight-month-old baby was tear gas inhaled after Israeli forces targeted Loay Samir’s family home. Another 10-year-old was injured in the leg by a rubber-coated steel bullet.

Murad Shteiwi, the media coordinator for Kufr Qaddoum, said the IDF stormed the village under heavy coverage of live ammunition, adding that it attacked the homes of Palestinian residents, climbed onto their roofs and had used them as military barracks for their snipers.

Villages in the West Bank often hold protests on Fridays against land confiscation, house demolitions and Israeli settlements deemed illegal under international law. Israeli forces generally respond to protests with disproportionate violence.

Some 475,000 Israeli settlers live in the occupied West Bank, home to more than 2.8 million Palestinians.

Israeli troops on Thursday shot dead three Palestinians, including two security officers, in a shootout that erupted in the city of Jenin in what appeared to be an overnight Israeli arrest raid.

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