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Child Killed and Young Man Wounded By Palestinian Security Service in Qabatia

Ref: 12/2020

Today Morning, 19 February 2019, a child succumbed to wounds he sustained the day before when a Palestinian security force dispersed a celebration for a prisoner released from the Israeli jails because gunmen opened fire in the air.  Amid the ongoing shooting by the gunmen, those celebrating threw stones at the security force, which opened fire and fired teargas canisters.  Moreover, a young man was wounded while security officers were hit with stones.  The Palestinian Centre for Human Rights (PCHR) is concerned about the incident and calls upon the Public Prosecution to open an investigation to identify the circumstances.  PCHR also calls upon the Palestinian Authority to take all necessary measures to end the prevailing security chaos and proliferation of weapons and to maintain civilians’ life in accordance with the relevant international covenants and standards.

According to PCHR’s investigations, at approximately 19:30 on Tuesday, 18 February 2020, a large force of Palestinian security service arrived to disperse a celebration for a prisoner released from the Israeli jails in al-Zakarnah Mount area, west of Qabatia, southeast of Jenin, after unidentified gunmen opened fire in the air.  Amid the ongoing shooting by the gunmen, those celebrating threw stones at the security force, which in response opened fire and fired teargas canisters to disperse them.  As a result, Salah Mohammed Sa’id Zakarnah (15) was wounded with a bullet in the abdomen; and Naser Faisal Khzeimiyah (25) was wounded with a bullet that entered his abdomen and exited from the back.  The two wounded were taken to Khalil Soliman Governmental Hospital in Jenin, but due to their serious condition, they were referred to An-Najah National Hospital in Nablus.  In the morning, doctors declared Zakanrah’s Death.

Following the incident, Palestinian media quoted a statetment for Jenin Govornoer, Major General Akarm Rojoub that a security force moved towards the village after being informed that gunmen intended to organize a military parade to welcome a prisoner released from the Israeli prisons.  When the security force arrived at the village, civilians threw stones and the gunmen opened fire.  In response, the force fired teargas canisters and opened fire in the air.  He added that 15 security officers were wounded with the stones.

PCHR hereby condemns the killing of Zakarnah and:

  • Calls upon the Public Prosecution to investigate the incident, identify the circumstances and publish the investigation results on public in addition to taking the legal proceedings necessary for prosecuting those responsible.
  • Emphasizes the significance of taking the measures necessary for maintaining security and banning possession or use of weapons but with the security officers’ full compliance with principle of proportionality, protection of civilians’ property and nonuse of excessive force in accordance with human rights standards in law enforcement missions.