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Palestinian motorcyclist dies, reportedly after being run over by Israeli settler

July 7, 2017 11:34 A.M. (Updated: July 7, 2017 4:39 P.M.)
BETHLEHEM (Ma'an) -- A 37-year-old Palestinian man was killed early Friday morning, reportedly after being run-over by an Israeli settler west of Bethlehem city in the southern occupied West Bank

Locals later identified the victim as Omar Ahmad Issa from the Bethlehem-area town of al-Khader, with Palestinian security sources saying he was run over at around 4 a.m. while riding his motorcycle near the "tunnels" checkpoint on Route 60 west of Bethlehem that leads to occupied East Jerusalem. Sources said that Issa sold coffee and tea on Route 60 for a living.

In a statement, Israeli police spokesperson Luba Samri described the incident as a "road accident" between a private vehicle and a Palestinian motorbike, in which Issa was critically injured and pronounced dead at the hospital. She said Issa was 33 years old and from Beit Sahour, not al-Khader.

Sources at the Palestinian Red Crescent told Ma’an that "he was believed to be run over by an Israeli settler," though the reports could not be confirmed.

Some reports in local media said that Red Crescent ambulances had refused to receive Issa's body after arriving to the scene, because they were unclear on the circumstances surrounding the incident and would not be able to inform the family the cause of death.

As a result, Issa's remains were evacuated by Israel's emergency medical services Magen David Adom to Israel's Shaare Zedek Hospital in Jerusalem. Local sources said that the hospital requested an autopsy of Issa, but his family refused.

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