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Palestinian shot dead by Israeli forces in alleged stabbing attempt near Qalandiya

June 20, 2017 5:42 P.M. (Updated: June 28, 2017 11:23 P.M.)
BETHLEHEM (Ma'an) -- Israeli forces shot and killed a Palestinian near the Qalandiya military checkpoint in the central occupied West Bank district of Ramallah on Monday, with the Israeli army claiming the man attempted to carry out a stabbing attack on Israeli soldiers.

An Israeli army spokesperson told Ma'an that shortly after 5 p.m., "an assailant armed with a knife attempted to stab Israeli forces" that were operating on a road between the illegal Israeli Adam settlement and Israel's Qalandiya checkpoint that leads to occupied East Jerusalem.

"In response to the immediate threat, forces fired towards the attacker and a hit was confirmed," the spokesperson said, and acknowledged, after being asked for clarification, that the Palestinian was in fact killed.

No Israelis were injured in the incident.

The Palestinian Ministry of Health identified that Palestinian as 23-year-old Bahaa Imad Samir al-Hirbawi from the central West Bank Jerusalem-area village of al-Eizariya.

Israeli news site Ynet reported that Israeli soldiers were carrying out a "routine check" when they fatally shot al-Hirbawi, who was allegedly armed with a knife.

Israeli forces have been routinely criticized for their excessive use of force and for what rights groups have termed a "shoot-to-kill" policy against Palestinians who did not constitute a threat at the time of their death, or who could have been subdued in a non-lethal manner -- amid a backdrop of impunity for Israelis who committed the killings.

Al-Hirbawi was the 34th Palestinian to have been killed by Israelis since the beginning of the year, according to Ma'an documentation. During the same time period, eight Israelis have been killed by Palestinians.

Three young Palestinian men were shot dead last week after carrying out an attack in occupied East Jerusalem that left an Israeli border policewoman killed.

In the wake of the incident, Israeli authorities have revoked permits issued so that 250,000 Palestinians from the occupied West Bank may visit their families in Jerusalem and Israel for the Muslim holy month of Ramadan, and imposed a harsh crackdown around Jerusalem's Old City and the hometown of the three slain Palestinians -- with the measures being denounced as "collective punishment."
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