11 Palestinians Wounded in Clashes With Israeli Troops in West Bank

Three Palestinians are in serious condition after clashing with soldiers in protest in refugee camp near Bethlehem

Palestinian demonstrator hurls stones toward Israeli troops during clashes at a protest near the West Bank city of Nablus, December 29, 2017.
MOHAMAD TOROKMAN/REUTERS

Eleven Palestinians were injured in clashes with Israeli soldiers on Thursday morning in the West Bank.

To really understand the Middle East - subscribe to Haaretz

Ten Palestinians were wounded by Israeli army fire in the Deheisheh refugee camp outside of Bethlehem in the West Bank. According to the Palestinian Health Ministry, seven of them were wounded by live fire, and three by rubber bullets. The wounded were evacuated to the hospital in Beit Jala.

Also on Thursday, another Palestinian suffered a serious head injury in Deir Nizam, northwest of Ramallah, when residents clashed with Israeli soldiers following the funeral of 17-year-old Musab Tamimi.

Tamimi was shot and killed during clashes with Israeli soldiers the previous day. Israeli security forces said Tamimi was shot because he was armed with a rifle during the clashes.

Palestinian mourners carry the body of Musab Firas al-Tamimi, 17, who was shot dead in clashes with the Israeli army, during his funeral in the village of Deir Nizam, West Bank, on January 4, 2018.
ABBAS MOMANI/AFP

According to eyewitnesses, the incident in Deheisheh lasted only 10 to 15 minutes, but resulted in a relatively large number of casualties – 10 people wounded, of whom two are in serious condition.

Sources in the refugee camp, some of whom were also quoted by the official Palestinian news agency WAFA, said the incident began at about 7 A.M., when many adults were on their way to work and many children on their way to school. Israeli soldiers, including an undercover unit, entered the camp to make arrests, and clashes broke out.

People in Deheisheh said there was no excuse for the soldiers’ conduct, and particularly for the choice to enter the camp at one of the busiest hours of the day, which could have resulted in many more casualties.

The Palestinian Health Ministry said seven people were hit by live bullets and three by sponge-tipped bullets.

The IDF said a protesters threw rocks and bottles, and in response soldiers used means of riot dispersal and later live ammunition.  

On Friday, some 4,000 Palestinians protested all over the West Bank and in the Gaza Strip and clashed with Israeli security forces. The Palestinian Health Ministry reported that a youth was killed in the confrontations, and another was seriously injured.

The IDF said soldiers responded and used means of riot dispersal, and later fired at a few protestors who attempted to cross the border fence into Israel.