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Israeli forces shoot, injure 2 Palestinian workers east of Bethlehem

Oct. 10, 2016 1:53 P.M. (Updated: Oct. 10, 2016 2:42 P.M.)
BETHLEHEM (Ma’an) -- Israeli forces shot and injured two Palestinians on Monday in the southern occupied West Bank district of Bethlehem, medical sources said.

Medics from the Palestinian Red Crescent said that two Palestinian workers were shot in the area of Wadi Abu al-Hummus near the villages of al-Khas and al-Numan east of the city of Bethlehem.

They added that the two Palestinians were injured in the lower parts of their bodies and taken to a hospital in Beit Jala.

Medical sources at the hospital described their injuries as moderate.

An Israeli army spokesperson told Ma’an that they were looking into the reports.

While the circumstances around the incident remained unknown, the Wadi Abu al-Hummus area is located near occupied East Jerusalem, which Palestinian residents of the West Bank are not allowed to access without an Israel-issued permit.

Tens of thousands of Palestinian workers are forced to seek a living by working in Israel due to crippling unemployment in the West Bank,as the growth of an independent Palestinian economy has been stifled under the ongoing Israeli military occupation, according to rights groups.

Israeli authorities have imposed a massive crackdown on undocumented workers in Israel in recent months, with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu saying in March that since a wave of violence began last fall -- which to date has left some 236 Palestinians and 36 Israelis killed -- “a large proportion of (Palestinian) attackers were present in Israel illegally or infiltrated into Israel illegally.”

However, few Palestinians attackers were in fact workers in Israel, and the recent crackdown on undocumented workers has been condemned by rights groups as a political game, unlikely to affect the violence, yet economically harmful to both Palestinians and Israelis.
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