Israeli forces have shot dead an unarmed Palestinian man in the West Bank, the Palestinian health ministry said, in what the Israeli army described as an “attack” on soldiers at a military outpost.
Abdullah Sami Qalalweh, 26 was killed on Friday evening by “Israeli occupation bullets near the town of Huwara, south of Nablus”, the Palestinian ministry said in a statement.
The official Palestinian news agency WAFA quoted Ahmad Jibril, a spokesperson for the Palestinian Red Crescent, as saying the victim died just minutes after being critically injured by Israeli forces.
Qalalweh’s death brings the toll of Palestinians killed by Israeli forces so far this year to 36, including eight children and an elderly woman, WAFA reported. Six Israeli civilians, including a child, and one Ukrainian civilian have been killed over the same period in the occupied Palestinian territories.
The Israeli army said its forces had “shot live fire into the air” after a suspect “walked towards a military outpost adjacent” to an army base in the Huwara area. It said Qalalweh “attempted to attack one of the soldiers” and that “another soldier who was at the spot fired toward the suspect and hit him”.
The army confirmed that Qalalweh was unarmed.
Earlier on Friday, the United Nations Human Rights chief Volker Turk called on Israel “to ensure that all operations of its security forces in the occupied West Bank including East Jerusalem, are carried out with full respect for international human rights law”.
He stressed adherence to “the rules regulating the use of force in law enforcement operations”, according to a statement from his office.
“Use of firearms is allowed only as a last resort, when there is an imminent threat to life or serious injury.”
The recent surge in killings by Israeli forces comes as part of intensified nightly raids, particularly in the northern occupied cities of Jenin and Nablus, under the banner of crushing limited Palestinian armed resistance.
Civilians confronting Israeli forces during raids and innocent bystanders have been killed, as well as Palestinian fighters in targeted assassinations and during armed clashes.
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