Israeli Forces Injure Dozens During Clashes Across West Bank

Israeli forces shot and injured dozens of Palestinian protesters with rubber-coated steel bullets and at least four with live fire in protests across the occupied West Bank on Thursday, medics and locals told Ma’an.

The four Palestinians who had been shot and injured with live fire were hit in the lower extremities during clashes in al-Bireh in the central occupied West Bank, while dozens more were injured with rubber-coated steel bullets.

At least 22 Palestinians were moderately injured by Israeli forces during the clashes, many of which were taken to the Ramallah Governmental Hospital for treatment.

An Israeli army spokesperson did not immediately respond for comment.

Clashes in al-Bireh have been ongoing daily since tensions heated at the start of the month.

Thursday’s clashes in the area erupted following a march organized by students from Birzeit University and al-Quds Open University, in addition to other colleges, institutes and schools of Ramallah and al-Bireh.

While suppressing the student’s march, witnesses said Israeli forces used rubber-coated steel bullets, live fire, tear-gas bombs and stun grenades near journalists who were covering the event.

A cameraman from television news channel, al-Arabi al-Jadeed, told Ma’an he was hit with a sponge round in his arm.

In addition to Ramallah, dozens more were injured across the southern occupied West Bank district of Bethlehem.

Israeli forces injured at least four Palestinians with rubber-coated steel bullets and dozens more with tear gas in clashes with Israeli forces on Thursday.

Medics told Ma’an that at least 35 Palestinians suffered from severe tear gas inhalation as Israeli forces raided Aida refugee camp in northern Bethlehem.

One woman was hospitalized for treatment while the rest were treated on the scene, medic said.

Israeli forces raided the camp firing tear gas before protests, which have been occurring daily in the area, had even began.

In al-Minya village south of Bethlehem, two protesters were injured with rubber-coated steel bullets in clashes, and dozens more suffered from tear gas inhalation, medics said.

Nearby, in al-Khader village, another two were injured with rubber-coated steel bullets in clashes that broke out after Israeli forces raided the village, and dozens more suffered from tear gas inhalation.

South of Bethlehem in the Hebron district, clashes broke out around the city center.

Locals said several Palestinians were injured during the clashes in Hebron, including at least three protesters who were shot and injured with rubber-coated steel bullets and dozens of others who suffered from severe tear gas inhalation.

The clashes in central Hebron erupted on Thursday following the earlier killing of 19-year-old Farouk Abdel Sidr on nearby Shuhada Street.

Meanwhile, Israeli settlers attacked homes of Palestinians living off Shuhada Street and the Tel Rumeida area, locals said.

Near-daily clashes have broken out across occupied Palestinian territory since the beginning of the month, where over twenty have been shot dead by live ammunition.

Those killed in clashes are among the more than 60 who have been killed during the time period, several of whom have been shot dead after carrying out stabbing attacks. At least nine Israelis have been killed during the same time period.

Clashes initially began to escalate following the fatal shooting of two Israeli settlers on Oct. 1 by suspected Palestinian gunmen as well as increased restrictions on Palestinian entry to the Al-Aqsa Mosque compound.

The UN Secretary-General said last week that while Israeli PM Benjamin Netanyahu and the Palestinian Authority have pledged to curb violence, “this crisis would not have erupted….if the Palestinians did not still live under a stifling and humiliating occupation that has lasted almost half a century.”

(Ma’an)

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