Avi Issacharoff, Anshel Pfeffer & Reuters | Ha’aretz
5 June 2009
Palestinian officials reported on Friday that a Palestinians demonstrator had been killed during the weekly anti-separation fence rally near the West Bank town of Na’alin.
Palestinian medical officials said 36-year-old Yusuf Srour had been killed by Israeli forces.
Medics said Srour was hit in the chest by a live bullet and another protester was wounded when soldiers fired at protesters.
Srour died minutes later, Mohammed Shahwan, a doctor on the ambulance called to the scene, told Reuters.
An Israeli military spokesman said troops had opened fire when protesters threw stones at them in the village, but denied that the troops had used live ammunition. However, an IDF spokesman said, an investigation has been launched into the incident.
Na’alin is the scene of weekly protests against the continuing construction of an Israeli barrier that has cut through the village.
Israel says the barrier it has built along its boundary with the West Bank is needed to keep bombers from infiltrating its towns.
Palestinians denounce the network of fencing and concrete walls which cut deeply into the West Bank in spots such as Na’alin, as a land grab that denies them territory they want for a future state.
Meanwhile, five demonstrators were injured in confrontations with security forces in the anti-separation fence rally in Bil’in.
Two months ago, Ibrahim abu-Rakhma was killed during a separation fence rally in Bil’in after suffering a tear-gas grenade hit to his chest, which witnesses said was launched some 30 meters away by security forces.
The Israel Defense Force issued a response following the incident, stating that approximately 100 protesters had attempted to tear down part of the separation fence while hurling rocks at security forces. IDF troops responded to the mayhem by employing demonstration dispersal devices.
Another incident occurred four months ago, in which American citizen Tristan Anderson, in his thirties, sustained critical wounds during an anti-separation fence protest in Na’alin.
Peace activists with the International Solidarity Movement of the Oakland, Calif. area, said Anderson was struck in the head with a tear gas canister fired by Israeli troops.