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11 injured in march to commemorate murder of Abu Khdeir

July 2, 2015 5:15 P.M. (Updated: July 2, 2015 8:04 P.M.)
RAMALLAH (Ma'an) -- Israeli forces on Thursday injured 11 Palestinians as they suppressed a march in the occupied West Bank to commemorate the murder of Palestinian teenager Muhammad Abu Khdeir.

Activists attempted to close a road leading to the Geva Benyamin settlement northeast of Jerusalem, which is allegedly home to the three Israelis who kidnapped and murdered the 16-year-old Palestinian teenager last summer.

Israeli forces shoved and hit demonstrators with truncheons and rifles, witnesses said, while Jordanian journalist Nibal Farsakh and an international activist were pepper-sprayed in the eyes.

Abdullah Abu Rahmeh, coordinator of a local popular committee, told Ma'an that"activists decided to head to the Adam (Geva Binyamin) settlement to show that Palestinians will not forgive the assassination of a Palestinian child, as well as our refusal of settlements."

Protestersheld posters of Abu Khdeir and chanted slogans against the illegal settlement, which is partially built on private Palestinian land.

Muhammad, 16, was burned to death in July 2014 by Jewish Israelis in a suspected revenge attack for the murders of three Israeli teenagers in the occupied West Bank.

The Palestinian youth had originally been recognized by Israeli authorities as a victim of terror as Israel marked Memorial Day in April to honor soldiers and civilians killed since the founding of the state in 1948.

Muhammad's family said that Israel only added his name to "improve its image to the world" after the gruesome murder which shocked residents of occupied East Jerusalem.

"We refuse that Muhammad's name be included to the list of Jewish victims, and adding his name to the list will not change the fact of Israeli racism," the family said.
Relatives said that the suspects in the killing have had 12 court hearings since the incident, despiteoverwhelming evidence of the crime.

A Palestinian suspect would have been sentenced immediately, without delays, they said.

Muhammad's father Hussein Abu Khdeir told Ma'an that Israeli authorities in Jerusalem forced the family to remove a large picture of their son which they put up outside of their home last year, and threatened to fine the family 2,000 shekels ($500) every day that the poster was not removed.

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