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Photo by: REUTERS/Mohamad Torokman
Abbas condemns killing of Palestinian teen
By KHALED ABU TOAMEH AND TOVAH LAZAROFF
09/12/2013
Boy, 15, reportedly shot in back by IDF after stone throwing incident; military police investigation opened.
 
Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas strongly condemned the “cold-blooded killing by the killer gangs of the occupation army” as he spoke Sunday against the IDF killing of Wajih al-Ramahi, 15, the day before.

The PA conducted an autopsy on Ramahi on Sunday, in light of initial reports that he had been shot in the back.

An Israeli military spokeswoman said a military police investigation had been opened but she did not have more details about the circumstances of Ramahi’s death.

Thousands of mourners attended his funeral Sunday in the Jalazon refugee camp.

His body was held aloft on a gurney, atop which a wreath was placed. Abbas offered his condolences to the family.

Palestinians say the boy was killed on Saturday by an IDF sniper sitting in a watchtower near the Bet El settlement.

The boy’s father, Wajdi, said that the autopsy preformed by Palestinian forensics showed that his son had been hit with an M-16 bullet.

The father denied reports his son was involved in a stone-throwing incident near the Beit El settlement that preceded his death. He said Wajih was shot while standing outside the local school.

“They shot him as if he were a bird,” the father said.

Sarit Michaeli of B’Tselem said her organization’s initial investigation into the incident showed Ramahi was part of a group of boys throwing stones in that area.

IDF soldiers came to the area of the olive grove and instead of using riot dispersal means, the soldiers shot live ammunition, Michaeli alleged. “I do not know if they shot in the air or at the children,” Michaeli said.

Her organization plans to raise the issue of live fire with the military police. She said that it will also ask the Military Attorney General’s office to grant the boys involved in the incident immunity so they can testify.

Two boys who said they were friends of Ramahi and that they were with him when he was shot also blamed Israeli soldiers.

“Soldiers who appeared from an area at the fence fired at Wajih and killed him,” one said. The two boys refused to give their names.

Reuters contributed to this report.
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