A week after Israeli forces shot a Palestinian teenager in the stomach with a live bullet during a protest in the besieged Gaza Strip, rights group Defense for Children International – Palestine (DCIP) reported that the teen remained in a critical condition and denounced Israel for its “disregard for Palestinian lives.”
The teen was among dozens of youth to march along the border line near al-Bureij refugee camp in central Gaza, as protesters turned out across the occupied Palestinian territory in solidarity with a mass hunger strike launched by Palestinians in Israeli prisons, which culminated on its 40th day on Saturday.
A statement published Monday on DCIP’s website identified the youth Khalid Ghamri, saying he turned 17 while unconscious in the hospital.
— Waking Times (@wakingtimes345) May 30, 2017
DCIP quoted doctors at the Al-Aqsa Martyrs Hospital in Deir al-Balah, who described Ghamri’s injury as serious and his overall health condition as “very critical,” and said the boy remained unconscious and under intensive care.
Dr. Mahmoud Alyan told DCIP that the bullet fractured Ghamri’s right arm, lacerated his bowel and abdomen on the right side, damaging blood vessels that supply blood to the lower body.
— The IMEU (@theIMEU) May 24, 2017
“Israeli forces’ frequent use of live ammunition at the Gaza border shows a pattern of disregard for Palestinian lives,” the statement quoted DCIP Accountability Program Director Ayed Abu Eqtaish as saying. “This pattern is made worse by the fact that accountability for child injuries and fatalities in such cases is extremely rare.”
Since the beginning of the year, UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) reported that 26 Palestinians have been injured in Gaza by Israeli live fire, while DCIP documented four child injuries.
A 15-year-old Palestinian was killed by Israeli shelling in eastern Rafah city in the southern Gaza Strip before dawn in March.
— Mai Ragab #غزة (@Mai_Gazan) May 30, 2017
DCIP noted that Khalid’s injury also came amid a spike of Palestinian injuries during clashes across the occupied Palestinian territory, with OCHA reporting that 255 Palestinians in the West Bank were injured, including 26 children, between May 2 and 15 alone.
(Maan, PC, Social Media)