Israeli forces have shot dead a Palestinian teenager during a raid on the central part of the West Bank, amid rising tensions in the occupied territories fueled by the Israeli army incursions, arrests, and arbitrary killings.
Palestine’s official Wafa news agency, citing the Ministry of Health, reported that 18-year-old Thayer Khalil Yazouri was shot in the heart during a confrontation at Jabal al-Tawil area in the city of al-Bireh, situated 15 kilometers (9.3 miles) north of al-Quds, on Wednesday.
Palestinian security sources said clashes broke out between local residents and Israeli soldiers, who fired live ammunition and rubber-coated bullets to disperse the crowd.
The sources added that a 17-year-old boy was shot with live bullets in the leg.
The development came shortly after Israeli forces shot dead Shireen Abu Akleh, a Palestinian journalist for the Qatar-based and Arabic-language Al Jazeera television news network, in the occupied West Bank.
She was hit by a live bullet while covering Israeli raids in the city of Jenin and was rushed to the hospital in critical condition, according to the Palestinian health ministry and her colleagues.
Abu Akleh was wearing a press vest when she was killed.
Ali Samoudi, another Palestinian journalist for the channel, was hospitalized in stable condition after being shot in the back.
In video footage of the incident, Abu Akleh can be seen wearing a blue flak jacket clearly marked with the word “PRESS.”
Samoudi told The Associated Press they were among a group of seven reporters who went to cover the raid early Wednesday.
He said they were all wearing protective gear that clearly marked them as reporters, and they passed by Israeli troops so the soldiers would see them and know that they were there.
He said the first shot missed them, then a second struck him, and a third killed Abu Akleh. He said there were no combatants or other civilians in the area — only the reporters and Israeli army troops.
Shaza Hanaysheh, a reporter with a Palestinian news website who was also among the reporters, gave a similar account, stressing there were no clashes or shooting in the immediate area.
She said that when the shots rang out she and Abu Akleh ran toward a tree to take shelter.
“I reached the tree before Shireen. She fell on the ground,” Hanaysheh said. “The soldiers did not stop shooting even after she fell. Every time I extended my hand to pull Shireen, the soldiers fired at us.”
The Palestinian Ministry of Information condemned what it said was a “shocking crime” committed by Israeli forces.