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Israeli forces raid 'mourning tent' dedicated to slain Palestinian Misbah Abu Sbeih

Oct. 14, 2016 12:53 P.M. (Updated: Oct. 16, 2016 5:09 P.M.)
HEBRON (Ma'an) -- Israeli soldiers Thursday evening raided a “mourning tent” in the southern occupied West Bank city of Hebron, dedicated to Misbah Abu Sbeih, who was killed by Israeli forces on Sunday after carrying out a shooting attack in occupied East Jerusalem that left two Israelis dead. 

Witnesses told Ma’an that Israeli soldiers ripped down pictures of Abu Sbeih and placards decorated with political slogans before leaving the area.

An Israeli army spokesperson told Ma'an she would look into reports on the raid.

Abu Sbeih was killed by Israeli forces after carrying the drive-by shooting attack in the East Jerusalem neighborhood of Sheikh Jarrah, which killed an Israeli police officer and an Israeli woman.

The shooting has sparked violent Israeli detention campaigns and heightened security measures throughout occupied East Jerusalem and the West Bank, prompting clashes with Palestinian youths and leading to 20-year-old Ali Atef Shuyukhi being shot to death by Israeli soldiers, making him the 233rd Palestinian to be killed by Israeli forces after a wave of violence erupted last year across the Palestinian territory and Israel.

Meanwhile, Israeli forces have repeatedly targeted Abu Sbeih's family in the wake of the attack, beginning with the detention of his 17-year-old daughter Eiman. The detention came shortly after Eiman had posted a video on social media hailing her father's actions. "We deem my father as martyr,” she said in the video. “We hope he will plead for us before God on judgment day… I am proud of what my father did."

Israeli forces have also carried out violent raids in the Jerusalem district of the town of al-Ram, where Abu Sbeih had been forced to move back with his family after Israeli authorities banned him from East Jerusalem earlier this month.

Israeli forces also took measurements of his family's home, "using laser techniques and digging holes in the walls," in what was thought to be preparations for a punitive demolition.

On Tuesday, Israeli forces raided al-Ram and rounded up all family members in one room "at gunpoint and did not allow them to talk or move," according to witnesses.

Soldiers then searched every room, "damaging the family’s belongings," while other soldiers took photos and measurements of the apartments, seemingly in preparation for an impending punitive demolition of their homes.

The family also said that Israeli soldiers threatened to revoke their Jerusalem IDs.

Israeli authorities have come under repeated criticism for carrying out large scale detention raids, limiting the freedom of mobility of Palestinians, and punitive home demolitions -- what many human rights organizations have called “collective punishment” -- in response to such attacks.

Their actions have been condemned by rights groups, who have said the measures amount to “court-sanctioned revenge,” and represent a clear violation of international law.
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