EU demands probe into IDF shooting of Palestinian

Abu Aram is in critical condition in a Hebron hospital after being shot in the neck.

IDF troops near the location of the exposed IEDs. (photo credit: IDF SPOKESPERSON'S UNIT)
IDF troops near the location of the exposed IEDs.
The European Union has called for an investigation into the IDF shooting in the neck of Harun Abu Aram on Friday during an incident in which soldiers attempted to confiscate a generator in the south Hebron hills in the West Bank.
Abu Aram, 24, is in critical condition at Al-Ahli Hospital in Hebron and according to the Palestinian Authority’s Ministry of Health, he is likely to be paralyzed.
“The EU opposes such excessive and disproportionate use of force and calls on the Israeli authorities to swiftly and fully investigate this serious incident in order to bring the perpetrators to justice,” a statement tweeted by the EU delegation to the Palestinians said on Saturday.
The Joint List also condemned the shooting and party head MK Ayman Odeh said the incident was part of an IDF campaign to rid Area C, which is under Israeli military and civilian control, of Palestinians.
Abu Aram “is another victim of the attempt to push the [Palestinian] villagers in Area C into cities [in Area C], and to seize as much territory as possible [there] with as few Palestinians as possible,” Odeh said.
“The only solution is an independent Palestinian state alongside the State of Israel,” he added.
MK Aida Touma Suleiman (Joint List) tweeted that, “such crimes will not end until the occupation is over.”
“The claim that a Palestinian was wounded by live ammunition is known and the incident is being investigated,” the IDF said.
Channel 12 reported on Friday night that an initial investigation indicated that Abu Aram was shot unintentionally when the weapon of one of the soldiers at the scene discharged accidentally.
According to the left-wing non-governmental group B’Tselem, the incident occurred when the IDF attempted to confiscate construction equipment, including a generator, from Abu Aram’s neighbor.
The IDF demolished Abu Aram’s home in November, and his home, and that of his neighbor’s, which was under construction, were built illegally.
“Abu Aram was shot in the neck from a close distance as he and other Palestinians were attempting to retrieve the generator from the soldiers,” B’Tselem said.
According to the IDF, the incident occurred during a “routine task to seize illegal equipment.”
It explained that “a violent altercation broke out that included massive stone throwing in which 150 Palestinians participated.” It added that troops responded with protest dispersal means and fired into the air.
A two-minute, 31-second video clip of the incident showed what initially looked like a tug-of-war between soldiers and Palestinians over a large item of mechanical equipment. None of the Palestinians appeared to be armed and at most, there appeared to be half-a-dozen Palestinians in the frame interacting with the soldiers.
Then, at 1 minute, 54 seconds, there is a shot and the camera is jostled and points to the ground before returning to the scene, where Abu Aram can be seeing lying on the ground.