Maureen Clare Murphy
The Electtronic Intifada / June 18, 2022
Israeli occupation forces extrajudicially executed three Palestinians in the northern West Bank city of Jenin on Friday.
The three men – Yusif Naser Salah (23),, Laith Salah Abu Srour (24), and Baraa Kamal Lahlouh (24), were killed when Israeli forces surrounded their vehicle and directly targeted them.
Eight Palestinians were injured, one of them critically, during protests that erupted after the extrajudicial killings.
An Israeli military spokesperson claimed that the three slain men had opened fire at troops from the Golani Brigade while the latter were “searching for weapons in the city,” the Tel Aviv daily Haaretz reported.
The military claimed it found weapons in the car in which the three were killed.
The Jenin incident echoes the killing of three Palestinians when Israeli forces intercepted the car in which they were traveling in Nablus in February.
Israeli forces reportedly fired some 80 bullets at the targeted vehicle.
Following the extrajudicial killings in Jenin on Friday, the Palestinian Center for Human Rights called for international intervention “to end Israeli extrajudicial executions that are considered a form of summary execution without trial.”
Three Palestinians were killed by Israeli forces in Jenin last month, including a teenager accused of throwing a Molotov cocktail, a man fatally injured during an hours-long standoff and iconic Al Jazeera correspondent Shireen Abu Akleh.
On Thursday, Al-Jazeera announced that it had obtained an image of the bullet that killed Abu Akleh.
An analysis of the bullet shows that it is a 5.56mm caliber armor-piercing bullet used in an M4 rifle, weapons and munitions used by the Israeli military.
Video released by Israel shows that its forces were using M4 rifles during the raid that Abu Akleh and her colleagues were covering the day she was killed.
Israel continues to claim that Abu Akleh may have been killed by one of its soldiers or by Palestinian fighters and is demanding that the Palestinian Authority hand over the bullet for ballistics testing.
Eyewitnesses and survivors and multiple independent investigations indicate that the slain correspondent and her colleagues came under Israeli fire only, with CNN finding that she was deliberately targeted.
The bullet that killed Abu Akleh “was designed and manufactured in the United States,” Al Jazeera reported.
Abu Akleh was a US citizen.
The 1997 Leahy Law prohibits the US from providing military assistance to units of foreign militaries when there is credible information that those units violated human rights with impunity.
Instead, the US is deferring to the Israeli military’s self-investigation, even though Israel said it would not probe the soldiers involved in her death.
Similarly, no commanders who oversaw the widely condemned attack on Abu Akleh’s funeral in Jerusalem will be disciplined, “a decision that was made in advance” of an Israeli police self-investigation, Haaretz reported.
A newly formed UN commission of inquiry into Israel’s systemic abuses against Palestinians states in its first report published earlier this month that “the culture of impunity begets further human rights violations.”
Maureen Clare Murphy is senior editor of The Electronic Intifada