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Funeral held for Palestinian killed by Israeli forces during solidarity march

May 12, 2017 9:03 P.M. (Updated: May 14, 2017 9:31 P.M.)
SALFIT (Ma’an) -- A funeral was held for 23-year-old Palestinian Saba Abu Ubeid on Friday in the central occupied West Bank city of Salfit, after he was shot and killed by Israeli forces earlier in the day during clashes following a march in the Ramallah-area village of Nabi Saleh held in solidarity with some 1,300 Palestinians currently on a mass hunger strike in Israeli prisons.

The funeral procession set off from Yasser Arafat governmental hospital in Salfit, and headed towards Abu Ubeid’s home where his family gave their final farewells. His body was then taken to the Salfit mosque for funeral prayers.

Mourners marched in the city’s streets holding Abu Ubeid’s body on their shoulders, until they reached the cemetery where they buried the slain Palestinian.

Following the burial, mourners praised Abu Ubeid’s role in supporting solidarity activities for the hunger strikers, adding that Abu Ubeid himself had also spent two years in Israeli prison.

The parents of Abu Ubeid said that their son was a “martyr of the battle for freedom and dignity,” referring to the name "Freedom and Dignity" given to the mass hunger strike that was launched last month to demand basic rights for Palestinian prisoners.

Representatives of the Fatah movement expressed their condolences to Abu Ubeid’s family, while the Palestinian National Forces declared three days of mourning and that a mourning tent be erected in the city for others to pay their respects to the slain Palestinian.

Abu Ubeid was killed in Nabi Saleh earlier in the day after clashes erupted with Israeli forces during a march held in solidarity with the hunger strikers. He was pronounced dead shortly after Israeli forces shot him in the chest with a live bullet.

An Israeli army spokesperson confirmed to Ma’an at the time that the Israeli army had opened live ammunition on the group of unarmed protesters.

Rights groups have routinely condemned Israel's use of excessive force against Palestinian protesters, which typically includes shooting rubber-coated steel bullets, live bullets, tear gas, stun grenades, and a variety of other weapons -- most of which have the potential to cause fatalities -- at Palestinian demonstrators throwing rocks and Molotov cocktails.

Abu Ubeid became the 21st Palestinian to be killed by Israeli forces and settlers since the start of 2017, several of whom were also shot dead amid clashes with Israeli forces.
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