Palestinians say protester killed in West Bank clashes
RAMALLAH, West Bank (AP) – A Palestinian was killed by Israeli live ammunition on Friday in an occupied West Bank town that has seen months of violent clashes between Palestinian protesters and Israeli forces, Palestinian officials said.
Imad Duikat, 38, was shot in the chest in Beita, in the north of the country, and was pronounced dead in a hospital, the Palestinian health ministry said. According to the Palestinian Red Crescent, another protester was shot in the foot by live ammunition and 20 others injured by rubber bullets during the clashes on Friday.
The IDF said hundreds of Palestinian protesters threw stones and firebombs at Israeli troops, who responded with rubber bullets and live fire.
Palestinian protesters in Beita have staged repeated protests against the establishment of an unauthorized Israeli outpost which they say was built on their land. At least five protesters were killed in the clashes.
Under an agreement reached in June between the Israeli government and settlers from the Eviatar outpost, the settlers left the area, but the settlement buildings remain intact and in military custody. The Palestinians reject the deal and say it is Israel’s step towards taking their land.
European representatives from the West Bank Protection Consortium – which includes nine European Union member states and five international charities – visited Beita on Thursday, following concerns over the recent increase in violence at the outpost of ‘Eviatar.
Israel captured the West Bank in the Middle East War in 1967. The Palestinians seek the region as the heart of their future independent state. Most of the international community considers the settlements illegal and an obstacle to peace.