Israeli soldiers kill Hamas member in West Bank violence

The National  /  September 30, 2023 

At least 242 Palestinians and 32 Israelis have been killed this year in the conflict.

A Palestinian campaigner and member of the Hamas movement was killed on Friday evening in a clash with Israeli soldiers in the West Bank.

“Mohammad Roummaneh died as a result of serious injuries caused by bullets fired by the occupying forces in Al-Bireh” north-east of Ramallah, the Palestinian Ministry of Health said.

A second Palestinian had been injured, it said, without giving details.

At least 242 Palestinians and 32 Israelis have been killed since the beginning of the year in violence linked to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, according to an AFP tally based on official sources.

US-mediated peace talks between Palestinians and Israel collapsed in 2014, triggering a sharp decline in relations as violence increased.

In July, Israel carried out its most intense operation in the West Bank in nearly two decades, leaving widespread destruction.

Hamas issued a statement describing Roummaneh as one of its members who fell as a “heroic martyr” while “defending the freedom of (his) people” near the settlement of Psagot, AFP reported.

The statement was accompanied by an image of a very young man.

“Assailants hurled Molotov cocktails at a military post adjacent to the (Jewish settlement) of Psagot”, next to Al-Bireh, the Israeli army said.

“Soldiers identified the suspects and responded with live fire,” the statement added. “Two assailants were neutralized and transferred to receive medical treatment.”

The US strongly opposes the expansion of settlements by the Israeli government, US ambassador to the UN Linda Thomas-Greenfield has said.

Israel’s right-wing government has pledged to respond to Palestinian attacks.

Members of the cabinet have also encouraged settler violence in Palestinian communities, inflaming tensions.