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2 Palestinians killed overnight in West Bank
By JPOST.COM STAFF,KHALED ABU TOAMEH
06/22/2014
Palestinian man shot dead during clashes with IDF in Nablus; a second Palestinian killed in Ramallah after protesters attack PA police.
 


Two Palestinians were killed overnight during clashes with the IDF and Palestinian Authority Police in Nablus and Ramallah, respectively.

A Palestinian man was shot dead by Israeli troops operating in Nablus overnight, the Palestinian news agency Ma’an reported on Sunday.

The army has been conducting door-to-door searches in West Bank towns as part of efforts to ascertain the whereabouts of three teenagers kidnapped, presumably by Hamas militants, earlier this month.

The man was identified by Ma’an as Ahmad Said Suod Khalid, 36, from the Al-Ein refugee camp in Nablus.

Palestinians said Khalid was shot while he was on his way to a mosque, though Israeli troops said that he approached them in a threatening manner. According to the IDF, soldiers fired warning shots, to no avail.

The army said that an initial inquiry into the matter showed that Khalid appeared to be mentally unstable.

In Ramallah, the Islamic Jihad militant group said one of its members was killed by Israeli gunfire. Israeli security forces said that the victim, who was identified as Mahmoud Ismail Atallah of Ramallah, was killed by Palestinian police, not by the IDF.

In the first attack of its kind in many years, dozens of Palestinian protesters on Sunday attacked a Palestinian Authority police station in the center of Ramallah.

The attack took place shortly after clashes between Palestinians and IDF soldiers who entered Ramallah early Sunday.

Witnesses said that immediately after the soldiers left, the protesters hurled rocks at the police station and damaged seven police vehicles.

They said that the Palestinian policemen fired live ammunition to disperse the attackers and prevent them from storming the station.

Some reports said that three Palestinians were wounded in the incident.

The protesters chanted slogans condemning the PA security forces for conducting security coordination with Israel and failing to confront the IDF soldiers during their presence in the center of Ramallah.

PA President Mahmoud Abbas has been facing widespread criticism for speaking out against the kidnapping of the three Israeli youths in the West Bank. Abbas has also been denounced for insisting on pursuing security coordination with Israel.

A Palestinian journalist who was at the scene said that the attack on the police station occurred around 4:30am.

"The demonstrators chased the occupation army as it withdrew from the city," he said. "When the demonstrators reached the police station, they started chanting for Palestine while the [Palestinian] policemen were watching from the windows of the police station. Then the demonstrators began chanting slogans against security coordination and asked the policemen why they hadn't defended Ramallah."

According to the journalist, at this point the protesters started hurling stones at the station "in a crazy, intensive and terrifying manner. They also damaged police vehicles parked outside the station. The policemen fired live ammunition and I saw one person being injured."



A dramatic seven minute video posted on Youtube supported the eyewitness testimony. It showed dozens of young men, unmasked, throwing stones at the police station’s blue doors. They also lit trash cans on fire. Stone after stone hit the doors, until Palestinian security force fire cleared the street. The young men ducked behind available walls, but still continued to throw a few stones.

Tovah Lazaroff contributed to this report.

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