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Family denies 'axe attack' pretext for deadly shooting

Dec. 4, 2012 8:26 P.M. (Updated: Dec. 5, 2012 8:43 P.M.)
JENIN (Ma'an) -- A Palestinian man who was shot dead by Israeli security agents outside Nablus on Monday did not attack them before they opened fire, his family maintains.

Hatem Shadid of the Illar village was driving when his car collided with an Israeli jeep near the Beit Lid village. One of the occupants of the car, a Shin Bet agent, later shot him.

Israeli officials said Shadid had attacked the agents with an axe but his family disputed the account saying he was going about his day normally when the incident occurred.

Relatives told Ma'an that Hatim left his home after dawn prayer to Nablus, then he traveled back to Tulkarem where he works at a construction company, before he was shot dead.

Israeli forces later broke into the victim's home in Illar and detained three of his brothers for interrogation. His wife was also questioned at home, Shadid's sister told Ma'an.

She added that 30 Israeli soldiers and an intelligence officer ransacked the house. The soldiers confiscated medical reports and other documents. She said Hatim suffered from back problems.

Relatives told Ma'an that reports the victim had attacked the agents were false.

"He crosses several military checkpoints every day, and the Israelis are only trying to give trivial pretexts to justify the killing," a cousin of the victim said.

The family called upon the Palestinian government and president to investigate the killing of Hatim "in cold blood" highlighting that he left behind five children aged 1-12 years.

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