Israeli forces shoot dead Palestinian man in occupied Bethlehem

Israeli forces shoot dead Palestinian man in occupied Bethlehem
2 min read
05 January, 2021
Ahed Ikhlil, 25, was shot and killed by Israeli forces in town of Beit Ummar, situated between Hebron and Bethlehem after he allegedly tried to stab settlers.
Israel has occupied the West Bank since 1967 [Getty]
Israeli forces shot dead a 25-year-old Palestinian man at a town between the occupied West Bank cities of Bethlehem and Hebron after he allegedly attempted to stab a group of Israeli settlers.

Ahed Ikhlil, from the town of Beit Ummar, was gunned down after Israeli authorities claimed he attempted to stab settlers near the illegal Gush Etzion settlement junction, north of Hebron, according to Palestinian Authority's [PA] official news agency Wafa.

Coordinator of the popular committee against the wall and settlements, Mohammed Awad, said Ikhlil's family was summoned after his death to appear before the Israeli intelligence in Gush Etzion detention and interrogation centre.

Israeli forces closed the military checkpoint at the entrance of Beit Ummar after the shooting, preventing Palestinian residents from leaving or entering the town.

Palestinians sporadically attack Israeli settlers in the West Bank, occupied by Israel since the Six-Day War of 1967, mostly in stabbings and car rammings.

Israel routinely destroys the homes of families of alleged Palestinian attackers as a form of collective punishment against the community. 

Israeli authorities contend that these punitive demolitions issue "a severe message of deterrence to terrorists and their accomplices – that they will pay a price if they continue their terrorist activities and harm innocent people".

Despite having halted the practice in 2005 after deeming it ineffective, it was reinstated in 2014.

The UN and human rights organisations have said that the practice contravenes international law and is a form of collective punishment, however, Israel shows no sign of stopping.

Around 600,000 Israelis live in settlements in the West Bank and illegally annexed east Jerusalem, next to some three million Palestinians who live under .

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