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PCHR Demands Investigation into Killing of Person and Injury of 3 Others by Security Services

Ref: 45/2016

Today at dawn, 28 September 2016, Palestinian Security officers killed one person and wounded 3 others, including a child, after opening fire at them near Balatah refugee camp in Nablus.  The Palestinian Center for Human Rights (PCHR) calls upon the Attorney General to investigate the incident circumstances and publish the results in public.  PCHR also emphasizes that security services should be committed to the law and apply the law within the international standards relevant to the use of force.

According to PCHR’s available information, at approximately 01:45 on Wednesday, 28 September 2016, Palestinian National Security officers opened fire at 4 gunmen, who were in a civilian car near al-Ghawi Intersection between ‘Askar and Balatah refugee camps, east of Nablus.  As a result, the four gunmen were wounded.  Three of them were taken to the Intensive Care Unit (ICU) at Rafidia Governmental Hospital while the fourth one was taken to al-‘Arabi Specialist Hospital in the City. The wounded persons were identified as:

  1. Diaa’ Ziyad Mohammed ‘Arayshah (25), from Balatah refugee camp. He was critically wounded with two bullets to the abdomen and back and received medical treatment in Rafidia Hospital;
  2. Mohammed Hasan Salem Marshoud (25), from Baltah refugee camp. He was wounded with two bullets to the lower back and buttocks and have stayed in the ICU in Rafidia Hospital;
  3. Fahd Jamal Nemer Ishtayah (30) from Tal village, southwest of the city. He was wounded with a bullet to the abdomen and have stayed in the ICU in Rafidia Hospital and
  4. Ayham Sami Mohammed al-Srouji (17) from Balatah refugee camp. He was wounded in the abdomen and pelvis and have stayed in al-‘Arabi Specialist Hospital in Nablus.

In the afternoon, medical sources at Rafidia Hospital declared the death of Diaa’ ‘Arayshah.

Following the incident, at approximately 06:30, outraged civilians set fire to tires in Balatah refugee camp at the north-western entrance and on al-Quds Street, east of the city.  They closed the street and entrance in protest against the shooting at the four young men.  It should be mentioned that National Security officers are always stationed at the aforementioned intersection and only withdraw when Israeli forces move into the camp as the Intersection itself is the Israeli settlers’ starting point to Joseph Tomb in Nablus.

Commenting on the incident, General Akram al-Rojoub, Governor of Nablus, emphasized that unknown gunmen in a vehicle opened fire at and chased Palestinian security officers on duty near al-Ghawi Intersection, east of Nablus.  The security officers in response opened fire at the four gunmen.  As a result, the four gunmen were wounded and taken to hospitals, where one of them was declared to be seriously wounded.

PCHR stresses that security services should maintain security and protect civilians.  PCHR also underscores the importance of eliminating the phenomenon of proliferation and illegal use of weapons in demonstrations or any other cases.  PCHR also emphasizes that security services should comply with the principles of proportionality and legality of using force.

PCHR strongly condemns any use of excessive or random force.

In light of the above, PCHR:

  1. Calls upon the Attorney General to investigate the incident and identify its circumstances; and
  2. Calls upon the Prime Minister, who holds the position of Minister of Interior as well, to fulfill his duties to guarantee the security services’ commitment to the law and to apply the law within the international standards relevant to the use of force.