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Israeli forces injure 15 Palestinians in Dura with live fire, rubber bullets

July 6, 2016 1:07 P.M. (Updated: July 6, 2016 5:33 P.M.)
A young Palestinian protester rolls a burning tire toward Israel's separation wall during clashes in Bethlehem on Oct. 9, 2015. (MaanImages/Killian Redden, File)
HEBRON (Ma'an) -- Five Palestinians were injured with live fire and ten others with rubber-coated steel bullets, while several more suffered from tear gas inhalation on Wednesday as Israeli forces raided the city of Dura after midnight in the southern occupied West Bank district of Hebron.

Sources at the Palestinian Red Crescent told Ma’an that ambulances carried dozens of Palestinians to hospitals in the Hebron area who suffered from light to medium injuries, with one sustaining critical injuries.

According to locals, Palestinian youths threw rocks at Israeli forces as they raided Dura, which is located southwest of Hebron City, and Israeli soldiers responded by opening fire on Palestinians and launching tear gas canisters at youth and at civilian homes.

An Israeli army spokesperson told Ma’an that “hundreds” of Palestinians attacked Israeli forces by throwing rocks, while also throwing firebombs and rolling burning tires at soldiers. No Israelis were injured.

She added that Israeli forces used riot dispersal means “in light of the ongoing assault” by firing 0.22 caliber bullets as well as rubber-coated steel bullets into the crowds. She confirmed that "several hits" were made.

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

The clashes came amid an ongoing Israeli military siege of the entirety of Hebron, restricting passage out of the occupied West Bank’s most populous city to humanitarian and military cases only.

Locals also told Ma'an that Israeli forces raided Hebron City overnight, detaining three Palestinians.

Locals identified the detained to Ma’an as Alaa Raed al-Zghayyar, 23, Ramzi Dandis, and Anas Qafisha, the son of Palestinian lawmaker Hatem Qafisha, who was released from Israeli custody on Sunday after six months in administrative detention.
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