Security chaos claims lives of four Palestine citizens since March in West Bank

Palestinian Authority security forces in the West Bank (file photo)

Middle East Monitor  /  August 8, 2020

Since March 2020, four Palestinians have been killed due to security chaos in the occupied West Bank, including a senior security officer.

Three of them were killed by the Palestinian Authority (PA) security forces while they were imposing lockdown measures related to the coronavirus. The security officer was killed in clashes between two families.

Emad Dweekat, a Fatah secretary from the Balata Refugee Camp in Nablus, was killed by the security forces as they were trying to close a shop which opened its doors despite lockdown.

Khalil Shehadeh Al-Sheikh, 47, was a senior officer at the Protective Security Apparatus. He is the brother of the PA Civil Affairs Minister Hussein Al-Sheikh and was close to PA President Mahmoud Abbas.

He was killed during clashes between two families in Al-Bireh, near the city of Ramallah. Sources close to the incident believe he was killed in revenge of the killing of Dweekat.

In March, Salah Zakarneh from Jenin was killed when the security forces violently dispersed a group of people celebrating the release of a Palestinian from Israeli prison. The gathering was a violation of lockdown measures.

The security forces killed Alaa Omriyeh from Al-Eizariya in occupied Jerusalem while they were forcing a family out from land owned by the municipality of the neighbourhood.

All of these cases were closed by an order from the PA, and no findings in any of the cases have been released.

The Independent Commission for Human Rights revealed, according to Safa News Agency, that these killings happened due to a: “Misuse of arms by the PA officers.”

The commission called for reviewing the use of arms in conflicts and dispersing gatherings, insisting that there should be restrictions on the use of arms.

It called for opening a criminal investigation and holding the people who opened fire accountable for the deaths.