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Israeli forces injure 3 Palestinians in weekly protests with rubber bullets, live fire

May 27, 2016 8:30 P.M. (Updated: June 3, 2016 7:32 P.M.)
Qalqiliya (Ma'an) -- Three Palestinians were injured and dozens suffered from tear gas inhalation as Israeli forces dispersed weekly protests on Friday in the occupied West Bank and the Gaza Strip.

Murad Shtewei, coordinator for popular resistance in Kafr Qaddum, told Ma’an Israeli forces fired rubber-coated steel bullets, tear gas, and used water cannons on demonstrators, injuring one Palestinian with rubber bullets to the hand and leg.

The injured Palestinian and dozens others who suffered from severe tear gas inhalation were treated on the scene.

Israeli forces also deliberately sprayed skunk water on the house of local residents Abd al-Raziq Amir and Abd al-Wahhab Amir, Shtewei added.

Locals said clashes broke out after Israeli forces raided the village, as an Israeli bulldozer closed a road in the village with dirt berms.

Meanwhile in the Gaza Strip, a Palestinian was injured when clashes broke out near the Israeli separation barrier adjacent to the Karni crossing east of Gaza City, according to local medical sources.

Dr. Ayman al-Sahbani of Gaza City's al-Shifa Hospital told Ma'an a 24-year-old who was shot in the foot by Israeli forces with live fire was admitted to the operations room.

East of al-Bureij refugee camp, Israeli forces opened fire and shot tear gas at youths who gathered to protest near the separation fence there.

In the southern occupied West Bank city of Bethlehem, a Palestinian teenager was reportedly shot and injured by Israeli forces when clashes broke out near the separation wall adjacent to the northern entrance to the city.

Official Palestinian government news agency Wafa quoted a security source as saying a 14-year-old was shot with live fire in the thigh, and was taken to Beit Jala governmental hospital in a moderate condition.

Also on Friday in the central occupied West Bank village of Bilin, Israeli forces did not use tear gas and other crowd control weapons to disperse weekly protests there for the first time in the 11-year history of weekly popular resistance demonstrations in the village.

An Israeli army spokesperson said they were looking into reports of the incidents.
Palestinians in the Gaza Strip crowd near the borders with Israel every Friday to show solidarity with what Palestinians in besieged coastal enclave have termed the “Jerusalem Intifada” taking place in the occupied West Bank and East Jerusalem.
Residents of Kafr Qaddum also stage regular protests against land confiscations as well as the closure of the village's southern road by Israeli forces. The road, which has been closed 13 years, is the main route to the nearby city of Nablus, the nearest economic center.

Many villages in the occupied West Bank and Jerusalem participate in weekly Friday protests, including Nabi Saleh, Bilin, Nilin, and al-Masara.

Israeli forces have come under repeated criticism for excessive use force as well as lethal methods of crowd control that often result in death or injury of protesters.

According to the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA), at least 2,068 Palestinians have been injured by Israeli forces in the occupied Palestinian territory since the beginning of the year.
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