Suleiman Ayesh Hussein Oweid, 20, who died from wounds sustained by the Israeli forces’ live fire at the Aqbet Jaber camp. (Photo: via Social Media/Palestinian Chronicle)
On Monday, April 24, Israeli security forces shot dead a Palestinian man, 20-year-old Suleiman Ayesh Hussein Oweid, and injured three others with live ammunition during a raid at the Aqabat Jabar refugee camp in the city of Jericho in the northeast occupied West Bank.
The governor of Jericho and Jordan valley, Jihad Abu al-Assal, told news outlets that the Israeli forces took Oweid’s body and have not returned it. They also arrested three Palestinians.
According to reports citing Israeli statements, the raid was carried out for ‘counterterrorism’ purposes. The Israeli forces were reportedly looking to arrest wanted ‘suspects,’ but did not provide further details. They claimed that live ammunition fire was carried out as the Palestinians they were looking to arrest were trying to escape and shot at them.
Palestinian eyewitnesses, however, disputed the Israeli claims and said that the occupation forces invaded the refugee camp and conducted violent searches in several homes, causing damage to people’s belongings. A number of residents were also temporarily detained and subjected to questioning. The Israeli forces fired sound bombs and tear gas canisters during the raid. Their snipers had also taken up positions on the rooftops of some of the houses in the camp.
The city of Jericho has been under a severe, illegal lockdown imposed by the Israeli military since Saturday last week, coinciding with the Islamic holiday of Eid. The military has reportedly erected several roadblocks and installed security checkpoints at all the main entrances to the city. As a result, Palestinians trying to leave or enter the city have either been unable to do so or have had to wait for long hours at the checkpoints, leading to massive traffic jams.
The raid on Monday took place around the same time as the killing of another Palestinian in occupied East Jerusalem. Reports stated that 39-year-old Hatem Asad Abu Nijmeh was shot dead by an illegal Israeli settler, allegedly after he tried to attack other settlers with his car and run them over. A number of settlers were reportedly injured and are being treated at a nearby hospital. According to the Israeli police, the Palestinian man sped up his car at an intersection and rammed it into pedestrians. A security footage video showed that the man had slowed down his car when he was shot dead by the settler and he was not posing a threat to anyone at that time. It was also reported that the man was suffering from mental health problems and undergoing treatment inside Israel.
With these two killings, the number of Palestinians killed by Israeli forces since the beginning of this year has gone up to 99, including 16 children, while hundreds of others have been injured. Israeli forces for the past several months have been carrying out illegal, violent raids across the occupied West Bank and East Jerusalem to quell growing Palestinian resistance to Israeli occupation and to maintain their subjugation and repression of the wider Palestinian population.