Israel soldiers kill teen in West Bank: health ministry

Israel soldiers kill teen in occupied West Bank, Palestinian health ministry says
2 min read
05 November, 2021
Mohammed Daadas, 13, died in hospital after being shot in the stomach during clashes between Palestinian protesters and Israeli forces in a village east of Nablus
Fridays are often marked by protests in the West Bank against the expansion of Israeli settlements [Getty]

A 13-year-old Palestinian was fatally wounded by Israeli army gunfire Friday during the weekly protests against settlement expansion in the occupied West Bank, the Palestinian health ministry said.

It said Mohammed Daadas died in hospital after being shot in the stomach during clashes between Palestinian protesters and Israeli forces in Deir Al-Hatab village, east of Nablus.

The Israeli army, contacted by AFP, said the incident was under review.

"A riot was instigated on a route adjacent to Elon Moreh community," it said. Troops responded with "riot dispersal means and live fire" at people who "hurled rocks" at soldiers.

Friday, the Muslim day of rest and worship, is often marked by protests in the West Bank against the expansion of Israeli settlements, which most of the international community regards as illegal.

Five other Palestinians were injured Friday in clashes in Beita and Beit Dajan villages, according to the Palestinian news agency WAFA.

Residents of Beita have struggled for months to dislodge Israeli settlers and the military from a hilltop on village lands.

The clashes come days after Israel announced it would advance plans for 3,000 more homes for Jewish settlers in the West Bank, despite international criticism.

Israel has also advanced a project to build about 1,300 homes for Palestinians in the West Bank, but critics said the move was an attempt to parry global condemnation of settlement construction.

Prime Minister Naftali Bennett has ruled out formal peace talks with the Palestinian Authority (PA), saying he prefers to focus on economic improvements.

Although Bennett is a former leader in the settlement movement, his coalition includes anti-occupation lawmakers.

His government that unseated longtime prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu has held together despite clashing ideologies by avoiding hot-button issues including the future of the Palestinian territories.

On Friday, the government celebrated parliament's approval of its 2021 and 2022 budgets, bringing stability to a shaky coalition after political turmoil that prompted four elections in two years.

Palestinians, for their part, have little trust in their own leadership.

A poll last month by the Palestinian Centre for Policy and Survey Research found that 80 percent of respondents want PA president Mahmoud Abbas to resign.