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PA asks UN to probe Israeli killings
March 29, 2016
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RAMALLAH: The Palestinian government asked the United Nations on Monday to launch an investigation into alleged extra-judicial killings by Israel following the deadly shooting last week by an Israeli soldier of a wounded Palestinian assailant as he lay on the ground.

The Israeli military has detained the soldier while it investigates the shooting, captured on video by a Palestinian activist. Palestinian official Saeb Erekat said that past Israeli investigations have failed to “serve justice,” claiming instead that Israel has been “rewarded with impunity.”

The shooting came amid a six-month wave of Palestinian attacks that have killed 28 Israelis and two Americans. Over the same time, at least 188 Palestinians have died by Israeli fire. Israel says most of those were attackers while the rest died in clashes with Israeli forces.

The Palestinians say the killings amount to extra-judicial slaying.

The shooting has divided Israeli public opinion.

Lt. Col. Peter Lerner, a military spokesman, said a preliminary investigation found the soldier arrived on the scene some six minutes after the initial incident, and that the second shooting occurred several minutes after that.

“There was no apparent threat from the Palestinian that was incapacitated,” Lerner said.

Other Israelis say the soldier was acting in self-defence. A poll conducted by Midgam Research and Consulting for Israeli Channel 2 TV News found that 57 per cent of Israeli Jews opposed to arresting and investigating the soldier. The poll questioned 522 people and had a 4.2 per cent margin of error.

Several nationalistic lawmakers, including Naftali Bennett of the Jewish Home party, accused detractors of abandoning the soldier before he was given a fair hearing.

Nahum Barnea, a veteran journalist with the Yediot Ahronot daily, wrote on Monday that “a new generation of vigilantes has risen up in our midst, Israelis seeking revenge.”

“They regard cold-blooded murder as an act of heroism, and regard upholding the army’s rules as defeatism,” he wrote.

Separately, Israeli forces detained at least 25 Palestinians in overnight detention raids across the occupied West Bank and East Jerusalem, and took measurements of three houses in preparation for demolition, Palestinian security sources said on Monday.

Palestinian media quoted security sources as saying Israeli forces detained Ahmad Mahmoud Marrar, 18, and Qusay Hayes, 17, in Beit Duqqu north-west of Jerusalem.

Israeli soldiers also raided the village of Beit Fajjar south of Bethlehem, ransacking a number of houses before detaining Salti Ahmad Thawabta, 17.

Israeli troops detained Abdullah Munther Qadous, 14, from the village of Burin south of Nablus and raided the house of Palestinian prisoner Saad Husam Al Faqih.

The security sources added that Israeli troops raided the village of Qabatiya near Jenin and measures three houses, which received demolition notifications.

Israeli forces also raided the villages of Beituniya, Deir Abu Mashal, Shuqba and Beitin villages in the Ramallah and Al Bireh district, the Palestinian security sources said.

In the village of Bani Naim east of Hebron, Israeli troops raided the house of Dawood Mousa Al Tarayra and detained his son Mousa Dawood Al Tarayra, 25, after allegedly finding a gun in the home.


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