Israeli forces shot dead a Palestinian man during confrontations in the occupied West Bank city of Hebron.
The 28-year-old Palestinian was shot and killed “with live ammunition”, the Palestinian health ministry said in a brief statement on Friday. The Palestinian Wafa news agency identified the man as Ahmad al-Atrash – who spent six years in Israeli detention as a political prisoner.
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The head of the Hebron governmental hospital was quoted by Maan news agency as saying al-Atrash succumbed to his wounds shortly after arriving at the facility.
Al-Atrash “arrived at the emergency department in very critical condition”, Maan reported, adding an initial examination indicated he was shot directly in the head with a live round.
Confrontations erupted in the centre of Hebron between Palestinians and armed Israeli forces, which fired live rounds and tear gas towards a crowd of young men, according to Maan.
Dozens of Palestinians suffered from tear gas inhalation and were treated at the scene, local media reported.
Hebron, the biggest city in the West Bank, is home to more than 200,000 Palestinians. About 1,000 Jewish settlers live there in illegal settlements under heavy Israeli military protection.
While settler attacks on Palestinians and their property is a regular occurrence across the West Bank, the situation in Hebron’s old city is particularly volatile.
Palestinians injured across West Bank
Meanwhile, the Palestinian Red Crescent said it also treated 70 people wounded in confrontations with the Israeli army on Friday in the city of Nablus in the northern West Bank.
A young man was shot in the “hand and foot” by Israeli forces during a march in Bilin, a small village of about 1,700 inhabitants east of the West Bank city of Ramallah, in commemoration of Land Day.
Palestinians commemorate Land Day annually, dating back to March 30, 1976, when six unarmed Palestinians were killed by Israeli forces during protests against the Israeli government’s decision to expropriate large tracts of Palestinian-owned land.
Israeli forces targeted protesters with live rounds, tear gas canisters, and sound bombs, which led to the man’s injury as well as dozens of cases of tear gas inhalation, local media reported.
At the Al-Aqsa Mosque in Jerusalem, the third holiest site in Islam, authorities said more than 30,000 people attended Friday prayers on the eve of Ramadan, which begins this weekend.
There were no reports of protests or violence.
Last year protests and clashes in Jerusalem during Ramadan ignited an 11-day Gaza war and Jewish-Arab violence in Israel’s mixed cities.
On Thursday, the Israeli army raided the West Bank city of Jenin, and earlier in the week raided the homes of two other Palestinians.
Israeli forces killed three Palestinians in the West Bank, including one suspected of carrying out a stabbing attack near the illegal settlement of Gush Etzion south of Bethlehem city.
Israel captured the West Bank in the 1967 Middle East war and has established dozens of illegal settlements where nearly 500,000 settlers reside.
The Palestinian leadership wants the West Bank as part of a future state and views the illegal settlements as a major obstacle to resolving the conflict.