Israel kills 3 Palestinians, including teen

People carry the body of Sanad Abu Atiya (16) who was shot and killed by Israeli forces (Ahmed Ibrahim - APA Images)

Tamara Nassar

The Electronic Intifada  /  March 31, 2022

Three Palestinians were killed by Israeli fire in separate incidents on Thursday morning in the occupied West Bank, including a child.

Israeli occupation forces invaded Jenin refugee camp to conduct arrests supposedly in connection with Tuesday’s incident near Tel Aviv where a Palestinian from the Jenin area killed five people before he was fatally shot.

Tel Aviv daily Haaretz reported that the raid on Jenin refugee camp was carried out in part by Duvdevan, an elite Israeli military death squad whose members often disguise themselves as Palestinians in order to carry out extrajudicial executions.

Israeli forces shot and killed two Palestinians in the camp.

An Israeli soldier exited the military vehicle, took up a shooting position, and fired 15 rounds of live ammunition.

Yazid al-Saadi, 22, was shot in the back of the head.

As 16-year-old Sanad Muhammad Khalil Abu Atiya was approaching him to render aid, he was fatally shot in the chest, according to a field investigation by Defense for Children International-Palestine.

Abu Atiya’s killing brings to five the number of Palestinian children killed by Israel since the beginning of the year.

Al-Saadi’s picture was circulated by local media:

A funeral procession was held for them in the camp on Thursday:

Israeli occupation forces, according to the ministry, also shot at least 14 Palestinians with live ammunition, injuring three seriously.

They also attacked a public hospital in Jenin with tear gas.

Medical staff suffered breathing difficulties and there was panic in the nursery, pediatrics and surgery departments, the Palestinian health ministry said. Babies had to be evacuated.

Stabbing

Meanwhile, a Palestinian man reportedly stabbed an Israeli settler using a screwdriver on a bus near the Efrat settlement, south of the occupied West Bank city of Bethlehem.

Nidal Juma Jaafreh, 30, was shot and killed by an Israeli civilian on the bus. His picture was shared on social media:

The settler is in serious but stable condition, according to Haaretz.

This comes as Prime Minister Naftali Bennett encouraged Israeli citizens to carry weapons.

“What is expected of you, citizens of Israel? Alertness and responsibility,” he said in a video address on Wednesday.

“Whoever has a license to carry a weapon, this is the time to carry it.”

Escalation

Israel’s routine killings of Palestinians pass largely without comment or action from the so-called international community. Israel has already killed more than two dozen Palestinians since the start of the year.

But as usual, it is only when the violence engulfs Israelis that a sense of escalation and crisis prevails.

That is what has happened amid a string of Palestinian acts of violence against Israelis inside Israel and in the occupied West Bank this month.

Now, the Israeli military is preparing for the possibility of large-scale confrontations with Palestinians during Ramadan.

May will mark the first anniversary of last year’s uprising across historic Palestine, when the Israeli military carried out an 11-day killing spree in the besieged Gaza Strip and across the occupied West Bank.

In Gaza alone, more than 250 Palestinians were killed, including at least 67 children. Israel obliterated entire families in their homes.

On Wednesday, Israel deployed large numbers of additional soldiers throughout the occupied West Bank and around the Gaza Strip.

In a rare move, soldiers will also reinforce Israeli police operations inside Israel, Haaretz said.

Israeli police have requested that entry to Al-Aqsa Mosque compound in occupied East Jerusalem during Ramadan be restricted to Palestinians over 60 years of age. Israeli military policy recommends men 45 years and over be allowed to enter.

Any further tightening of Israel’s already draconian restrictions on Palestinians’ freedom of movement and worship during Ramadan is likely to be an additional source of tension and provocation.

As if to pour gasoline on the fire, Israeli occupation forces allowed Itamar Ben-Gvir, an extreme-right Israeli lawmaker, to enter Al-Aqsa Mosque compound on Thursday.

Settler provocateurs like Ben-Gvir often go to the compound on the pretext that it is a Jewish religious duty.

However, since Israel occupied East Jerusalem in 1967, its top rabbis have consistently ruled that Jews should not enter the area, which Jews call Temple Mount, both for religious reasons and to avoid exacerbating tensions.

However, more recently the Israeli government has been allowing settler extremists whose goal is to destroy and replace Al-Aqsa Mosque with a Jewish temple to go there and pray.

Ben-Gvir was a central figure in settler provocations in the Sheikh Jarrah neighborhood of East Jerusalem last year that stoked the full-scale confrontation.

Even in Israeli terms he is a notorious racist.

One of Ben-Gvir’s heroes is Baruch Goldstein, the American Jewish settler who murdered 29 Palestinian men and boys during Ramadan prayers in Hebron’s/ Al-Khalil’s Ibrahimi Mosque in February 1994.

Tamara Nassar is an assistant editor at The Electronic Intifada