NABLUS: The Palestinian health ministry said that Israeli forces shot a Palestinian fighter in the West Bank on Wednesday, and the fighter later died from his wounds. At the same time, the army said it was shot at during an operation.
The armed faction of Palestinian president Mahmud Abbas’s Fatah movement known as Al-Aqsa Martyrs’ Brigade claimed the deceased individual as one of its members.
“Ahmed Amer Salim Abu Junaid, 21, succumbed to critical wounds, after he was shot in the head by the occupation, this morning, in Balata refugee camp in Nablus,” the health ministry said in a statement.
The army said that when troops entered the camp early on Wednesday, there were fights.
According to the statement, “Several suspects fired at the (Israeli) forces who responded back with live fire,” indicating that one person was hit.
Following Abu Junaid’s death in a “confrontation with the Zionist enemy army,” the Al-Aqsa Martyrs’ Brigade released a statement in which it stated that it “mourns its martyr.”
According to Wafa, the official Palestinian news agency, covert Israeli forces had “infiltrated the camp and surrounded a house.” It added that “live bullets, stun grenades, and tear gas” were fired by Israeli troops.
Wafa stated that Abu Junaid was initially taken to the Rafidia hospital in Nablus before succumbing to his injuries several hours later.
Since the beginning of the year, he is the fifth Palestinian who has been killed by Israeli forces in the West Bank.
Fears of a military escalation in the West Bank, which Israel has occupied since the 1967 Six-Day War, have arisen since Benjamin Netanyahu’s inauguration of the most right-wing government in Israel’s history at the end of December.
Critical powers pertaining to the West Bank have been taken over by two of Netanyahu’s extreme-right coalition partners who have a history of making inflammatory remarks about Palestinians.
Amer Abu Zeitoun, a 16-year-old from Nablus, was killed by Israeli forces last week during another operation. Both sides claimed that militants and Israeli forces had engaged in armed confrontations.
More than 150 Palestinians were killed in the West Bank in the deadliest year since 2005, according to the United Nations in December.