Middle East Eye / October 1, 2022
Angry protests follow shooting of Fayez Khaled Damdum, riding a motorbike, during Israel raid in area.
Fayez Khaled Damdum, 18, was hit with a bullet in the neck while driving a motorbike in the East Jerusalem town of Al-Eizariya, according to Palestinian reports.
The shooting took place during a raid by Israeli forces in the area.
A spokesperson with Israel’s police said they killed a suspect after he allegedly tried to throw a Molotov cocktail at the officers during protests.
Eizariya announced a day of mourning after Damdum’s death was confirmed as angry protests erupted in the town. Dozens of people gathered outside the family’s home to pay their respects, chanting anti-occupation slogans.
“He was the best person in the world, the nicest person,” Damdum’s sister told local media.
Occupied Palestinian cities have witnessed an increase in Israeli violence in recent weeks amid heightened security measures ahead of Jewish holidays.
Israeli forces conduct near-daily raid-and-arrest operations in various parts of the West Bank, which often lead to the wounding or killing of Palestinians.
Earlier this week, Israeli troops killed four Palestinians and injured more than 40 others in a raid on the city of Jenin, in the north of the occupied West Bank.
More than 150 Palestinians have been killed by Israeli fire this year, including 49 in the Gaza Strip and at least 100 in the occupied West Bank and East Jerusalem. The death toll in the West Bank is the highest since 2015.
Israeli forces kill Palestinian teen after alleged firebomb
AP / October 1, 2022
JERUSALEM – Israeli forces on Saturday shot and killed a Palestinian teenager in the occupied West Bank after a group of youths smashed a hole through the Israeli separation barrier and began throwing objects at police.
The shooting happened in Azariyah, a village just outside of Jerusalem, and marked the latest violence in what has become the deadliest year in the West Bank since 2015. In the Gaza Strip, meanwhile, thousands of supporters of the ruling Hamas militant group filled a soccer stadium in a demonstration they said was meant to show solidarity with Al-Aqsa Mosque in Jerusalem during the Jewish high holiday season.
Amateur video shared on social media showed a group of masked youths gathered in front of the towering concrete barrier and chanting slogans as they forced their way through a gate.
“Walk forward our popular fans,” they chanted. “A hole in the separation wall, a patrol explodes.”
Israel’s paramilitary border police said forces shot a protester who attempted to throw a firebomb at them as they came to disperse a demonstration. It said demonstrators threw stones and explosives at them. The Palestinian Health Ministry identified the dead youth as 18-year-old Fayez Damdoum.
Israel built the barrier some 20 years ago in what it said was a security measure meant to prevent attackers from entering Israel. But the barrier frequently dips into the West Bank, carving off nearly 10% of its territory. The Palestinians view the structure as an illegal land grab and symbol of Israel’s 55-year military occupation of the territory.
Israel captured the West Bank and East Jerusalem in the 1967 Middle East war. Some 700,000 Jewish settlers now live in the two areas, which the Palestinians claim for a future state.
Saturday’s killing came at a time of heightened tensions. Israel has been carrying out stepped-up military activity in the West Bank, mostly in the northern cities of Jenin and Nablus, following a series of deadly Palestinian attacks inside Israel last spring.
In Gaza, thousands of people attended Saturday’s rally, called “Al-Aqsa is in danger.” Hamas leaders, including its top official in Gaza, Yehiyeh Sinwar, stood on a stage and addressed the crowd.
Hamas has previously threatened violence in response to what it says are “violations” against Jerusalem and Al-Aqsa Mosque during the Jewish New Year holiday season. Tens of thousands of Jews visit the city during the holiday, including large numbers of people who visit the contested hilltop compound where the mosque is located.
Jews revere the site as the Temple Mount, home to the biblical Jewish Temples, and consider it the holiest site in Judaism. The site is the emotional epicenter of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, and the competing claims often spill over into violence.
Under longstanding arrangements, Jews are allowed to visit, but not pray at the site. However in recent years, the number of visitors has swelled, with some people praying under police protection.
These scenes have raised fears among Palestinians that Israel is plotting to divide or take over the site — a claim Israel denies.
Rawhi Mushtaha, a member of Hamas’ political bureau, said Israeli practices were endangering the mosque, the third-holiest site in Islam.
“The practices of the occupation in Al-Aqsa, the West Bank and Palestine herald the great explosion in Al-Aqsa,” he said.