Israeli army kills Palestinian worker near West Bank wall

MEE Staff

Middle East Eye  /  July 5, 2022

Ahmad Harb Ayyad’s family claims he was beaten to death by Israeli soldiers while attempting to cross into Israel to reach his workplace.

The family of a Palestinian worker has accused Israeli soldiers of beating the 32-year-old to death near the separation barrier in the occupied West Bank city of Tulkarm, according to the Palestinian Wafa news agency.

Ahmad Harb Ayyad, who is from Gaza, was killed while trying to cross the barrier to reach his workplace in Israel.

His body was handed back to the family by the Israeli army via the Beit Hanoun crossing late on Monday. 

Middle East Eye reached out to the Israeli army but had not received a response at the time of publication.  

The Palestinian Ministry of Foreign Affairs condemned the killing as a crime and placed the blame on the Israeli government.

For months, Israeli forces have been attacking workers along the separation wall in the villages and towns of the West Bank, preventing thousands from reaching their workplaces inside Israel and arresting many.

In June, Israeli forces killed another Palestinian worker near the separation wall in the south of Qalqilia city in the West Bank, according to the Palestinian health ministry.

A ministry statement published by Wafa news agency identified the worker as Nabil Ahmad Ghanem, 53, a resident of Nablus. He was on his way to his workplace inside Israel when soldiers opened fire on him and he died instantly.

The Israeli army said in a statement at the time that its forces “shot and wounded a suspect who tried to infiltrate through the wall near Qalqilia into the Green Line, where he was transferred to the hospital in critical condition, and there the doctors announced his death”.

The same month, two other Palestinian workers were wounded after Israeli soldiers opened fire towards them near the town of Idna, Hebron/Al-Khalil district, the Arab48 news website reported.

Israel began building the separation wall, known by Palestinians as the Apartheid Wall, in 2002 claiming it was aimed at protecting its citizens from attacks.

However, the International Court of Justice ruled in 2004 that the wall violated international law because it led to the destruction and confiscation of Palestinian lands and property, and imposed unlawful restrictions on the movement of Palestinians.

More than 65 Palestinians in the West Bank have been killed by Israeli forces this year, including journalist Shireen Abu Akleh, a prominent TV reporter with Al-Jazeera.