US says Palestinian youth killed by IDF was American citizen

US State Department spokeswoman Jen Psaki calls for "speedy and transparent investigation" of incident.

October 25, 2014 03:20
1 minute read.
Israeli police

Masked Palestinian protesters stand near burning tyres during clashes with Israeli police, October 24. (photo credit: REUTERS)

Clashes broke out in the West Bank village of Silwad on Saturday following the death of a Palestinian teenager. Orwah Hammad, 14, who also has US citizenship, was killed by the IDF the previous day while throwing firebombs at passing cars on Route 60 in the West Bank.

On Saturday in Silwad, Palestinian youths blocked the village’s road and threw stones at Israeli soldiers who responded with tear gas to disperse the crowds. No injuries were reported.

One of the Palestinians, a masked protester named Muhammad, vowed to continue to protest against Israel to retaliate for the death of Hammad.

“We are telling the army of the occupation that we will continue to protest and clash every Friday and every day to avenge the martyr’s death,” he said.

The IDF said that on Friday soldiers were on patrol north of Ramallah and had set up an ambush overlooking a stretch of highway when they saw the assailant throw the firebomb.

The army said the soldiers opened fire “in order to neutralize the threat to the lives of civilians driving on the highway.”

The military said it would investigate the shooting.

Hammad will be buried on Sunday, Palestinian officials said.

In Washington, State Department spokeswoman Jen Psaki called for a “speedy and transparent investigation.”

“The United States expresses its deepest condolences to the family of a US citizen minor who was killed by the Israel Defense Forces during clashes in Silwad on October 24,” Psaki said. She added that US officials would remain “closely engaged with the local authorities, who have the lead on this investigation.

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