(photo credit: INGIMAGE)
A security guard fatally shot a 13-year-old Palestinian girl who ran after him with a knife outside the West Bank settlement of Almon (Anatot) on Saturday morning, Judea and Samaria district police said.
The teenager, Ruqayya Abu Eid, was declared dead at the scene by paramedics.
Video footage showed the girl chasing the guard, seconds before she was shot.
Police said that their initial investigation determined that, just before the incident, the girl was involved in a fight with her family at their home in the nearby Palestinian village of Anata.
She then left the house “with the intention to die,” district police said in the statement.
They added that the girl’s father went looking for her after the fight and arrived soon after at the scene of the shooting, where he was arrested and taken for questioning.
The girl’s mother, Reeda Abu Eid, said there had been no trouble before her daughter left the family home, a tent in Anata.
“Her father works in a farm and Ruqayya used to go to him. I didn’t see her when she left, so I expected she had gone to her father,” she said. “Ruqayya is a small girl, how could she stab someone?” Taha Ni’man, head of the village council of Anata, said that the Abu Eid family was originally from the town of Yatta in the Hebron area.
He said that the IDF handed over her body to the Palestinian Authority in Hebron on Saturday afternoon.
Since the start of October, Israeli security forces have killed at least 149 Palestinians, 95 of them terrorists according to authorities.
Most of the others have died in violent protests.
Almost daily stabbings, shootings and car-ramming attacks by terrorists have killed 25 Israelis and a US citizen.
Many of the Palestinian terrorists have been teenagers. Separately Hamas refuted reports in the Israeli media that it was preparing for another war with Israel.
“We are not preparing for a new war,” Hamas leader Ismail Haniyeh said during a ceremony to honor award-winning Palestinian journalists in Gaza City.
But he clarified that Hamas is prepared for war, should one be imposed upon it. Haniyeh said more attention should be focused on the “reality of the al-Aksa Mosque, Jerusalem and the West Bank.” He also warned against any attempt to abort the current wave of attacks against Israelis, which began last October.
The Hamas leader called on the journalists to join the effort to “protect the intifada and its culture and grievances.”
Haniyeh condemned the continued incarceration of Hamas-affiliated journalist Muhammad Al-Qeeq, who has been on hunger strike in Israeli detention for the past two months.Tovah Lazaroff and Reuters contributed to this report.