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Jerusalem child shot by Israeli forces loses eyesight

Nov. 14, 2014 11:42 A.M. (Updated: Nov. 15, 2014 1:33 P.M.)
JERUSALEM (Ma'an) -- An 11-year-old Palestinian child shot in the face by a sponge bullet during clashes in al-Issawiya on Thursday has been left blind in one eye, a local official said.

Member of a local neighborhood committee, Muhammad Abu al-Hummus, told Ma'an that Saleh Samer Attiyeh Mahmoud, 11, was shot in the face at close range by Israeli forces firing sponge bullets in al-Issawiya during clashes.

He was hit directly between the eyes, causing severe bleeding to his nose and the loss of sight in his left eye. The vision in his right eye is also severely damaged.

Villagers in the East Jerusalem neighborhood were protesting the closure of three out of four entrances to the village by Israeli forces when the incident took place.

Sponge rounds are made from high-density plastic with a foam-rubber head, and are fired from grenade launchers.

Israeli police have been using them in Israel and occupied East Jerusalem since the use of rubber-coated metal bullets was prohibited, but protocol explicitly prohibits firing them at the upper body.

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