B’Tselem: Israeli Sniper Killed Palestinian Not Posing a Threat

Muhammad Abu Hashhash, 19, was killed on Aug. 16, 2016 in the al-Fawwar refugee camp. (Photo: via Ma'an)

By Palestine Chronicle Staff

The Israeli Information Center for Human Rights in the Occupied Territories, B’Tselem, has revealed in a new report yesterday that an Israeli sniper shot 19-year-old Palestinian, Muhammad Yusef Saber Abu Hashhash, during a raid on al-Fawwar Refugee Camp on August 16, 2016 despite him not posing a threat.

B’Tselem reported, “Abu Hashhash was shot from behind. A live bullet penetrated his back and exited through his chest, above the heart.”

The report added, “Abu Hashhash and other youths climbed up to a rooftop in the camp and threw stones at soldiers who had taken up positions on nearby rooftops. The youths went up to the roof and back down again several times throughout the day.”

“Muhammad Abu Hashhash went out of the house again and turned toward the group of youths who were hiding from the sniper in the alley. The moment he stepped outside, he was shot and fell. First aid teams that were in the camp carried him to an ambulance that was waiting on the main road, and from there he was taken to ‘Aliyah Government Hospital in Hebron, where he was pronounced dead,” B’Tselem noted.

An eyewitness described the death to B’Tselem’s field researcher, saying, “At one point, the neighbor, Saber Abu Hashhash’s door opened, and I saw Muhammad come out quickly. He turned quickly, apparently to join the group of youths who were standing near me. At that moment, I saw him fall to the ground, face down. I heard something that sounded like a shot fired through a silencer, so I assumed he had been hit.”

“I ran over to him. He tried to get up but fell immediately. I tried to help him, to resuscitate him. It looked like he was badly hurt because he stopped moving and wasn’t breathing. Some first aid volunteers who were in the area put him on a stretcher and carried him to the main road. A few minutes later, I found out he had died,” he added.

B’Tselem concluded that “Abu Hashhash was killed by 0.22-inch bullets (also known as Two-Two or Ruger bullets) when stepping out of his home, despite the fact that he posed no danger to the soldiers in the camp. These bullets are a type of live ammunition that is less powerful than ordinary live bullets, but can still be lethal or cause severe injury.”

The United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA) has called on Israel, in a statement released on August 23, to investigate the killing of Abu Hashhash in Alfuwar refugee camp in the West Bank.

Until such investigation takes place, the family of Abu Hashhash will continue to wait for justice.


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