Israel forces on alert after Palestinian teen dies

Written by: IANS
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Israel forces on high alert
Jerusalem, Sep 8:  Israeli security forces have been put on high alert after a Palestinian teenager, who was critically wounded during a protest in east Jerusalem a week ago, died on Sunday.

Muhammad Abd al-Majid Sunuqrut, 16, hurled rocks at officers during a demonstration that erupted in the city's Wadi Joz neighbourhood Aug 31, a spokesman for the Jerusalem District Police told Xinhua.

Riot police shot the teen in the leg with a sponge-tipped bullet, after he was seen fleeing the scene, the spokesman said, claiming that he then stumbled and injured his head, Israel's Walla News reported on Sunday.

But the boy's family claimes police shot Sunuqrut in the head with a rubber-coated bullet in an incident of unprovoked shooting. "He left home and was talking to his aunt on the phone, when suddenly he was shot at close range. After he fell the soldiers went on beating him and wouldn't let anyone come near him to treat him," Motabi Sunuqrut, the teen's uncle was quoted by Israeli daily Ha'aretz as saying.

The teen had hurled rocks at officers during a demonstration

The teen was initially evacuated to the nearby al-Mokassed Hospital, and later moved to an Israeli hospital in Jerusalem for treatment, where he was declared clinically dead Thursday. Physicians pronounced his death early Sunday.

Hussam Badran, a senior Hamas official, reacted to the boy's death on Sunday, saying that this "killing in cold blood is a crime that necessitates a proper response from all of our people and a strong response from members of the (armed) resistance."

Fearing that news of the boy's death would trigger violence, Israeli police were reportedly bracing for large-scale rioting in Jerusalem's Arab neighborhoods.

Weeks-long violent clashes erupted in the city and spread to Arab townships in northern Israel following the killing of Muhammad Abu Khdeir, 16, who resided in north Jerusalem and was murdered by far-right Jewish extremists in early July, in retribution for the abduction and killing of three Israeli teens June 12 by West Bank militants.


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