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par Ali ABUNIMAH
This video posted by the news agency PalMedia shows a young Palestinian woman left to bleed on a sidewalk in the occupied West Bank city of Hebron (1) after she was shot by Israeli soldiers on Tuesday [September 22, 2015] morning. By evening, Palestinian media reported (2) that the woman, 18-year-old Hadil Salah Hashlamoun, had died of her injuries. Instead of being given immediate medical treatment, the video shows her being pulled roughly out of the frame of the camera, her scarf coming off as her head drags on the ground. Israeli settlers and soldiers can be seen standing around, and in some cases smiling and laughing in the background. Wattan TV reported (3) that the young woman was left to bleed for more than 30 minutes.
Video : #HEBRON اصابة فلسطينية برصاص الاحتلال في الخليل
In a separate incident, a Palestinian man was also killed overnight by Israeli forces near Hebron. Local sources told Ma’an News Agency (4) that Diyaa Abdulhalim Talahmah, 21, was killed by the army during a raid in the village of Khursa. Israel has claimed he tried to throw a Molotov cocktail at its soldiers.
These shootings come just days after Israel loosened even further its already lax permission to its forces to use live ammunition against Palestinians.
Wattan TV named the young woman in the video as 18-year-old Hadil Hashlamoun. The Israeli army claimed that she was shot after she tried to stab a soldier, the Tel Aviv newspaper Haaretz reported (5). But photos and eyewitnesses contradic this account.
An Israeli army spokesperson said that the incident had occurred around 8 am at the so-called Container Checkpoint near Shuhada Street (6), Ma’an News Agency reported (7). The spokesperson said the woman approached the checkpoint in order to carry out the attack and Israeli forces responded with gunfire. The army said that the young woman was treated on site by Israeli medics and then taken to hospital.
Her father, Saleh Hashlamoun, told Wattan TV earlier on Tuesday that his daughter had been hit in the abdomen several times and was in serious but stable condition at Shaare Tzedek hospital in Jerusalem. By evening she had died.
The Hebron-based group Youth Against Settlements (8) published several photos on its Facebook page (9) that it says show the young woman immediately before and after the shooting. The photos show a person dressed in a long black dress and headcovering, carrying a briefcase. In none of the images is she holding any sort of weapon. Several Israeli personnel are pointing weapons at her. Youth Against Settlements suggests (10) the photo sequence shows that Hashlamoun tried to leave the checkpoint before she was shot. Other photos show the person lying on the ground with at least one bullet wound, the same briefcase visible near her. Additional photos (11) show the scene of the shooting, including blood on the ground and bullet holes in a metal door, after the victim was removed.
One eyewitness, a European activist, told The New York Times (12) that Hashlamoun had simply opened her purse to allow it to be inspected, at the request of a soldier. “When she was opening at her bag, he began shouting : "Stop ! Stop ! Stop ! Don’t move ! Don’t move !” the activist said. “She was trying to show him what was inside her bag, but the soldier shot her once, and then shot her again”. Several more soldiers raced over and also fired at her. A second witness, 34-year-old Fawaz Abu Aisheh, told the Times that Hashlamoun appeared “frozen” and in shock. Abu Aisheh said he had opened a gate inside the checkpoint so that Hashlamoun could back away from the soldiers. She tried to do so. “Even if she had a knife, she would have to leap over a barrier about a meter high to reach a soldier”, Abu Aisheh added. “There were six or seven soldiers with heavy weapons. There was no need for that assassination”. The Times said it had seen photos corroborating these accounts.
While Palestinians undoubtedly have (13) an internationally recognized right to resist (14) Israeli military occupation, the unverified claims of the army should never be taken for granted as accurate. Similar claims have habitually turned out to be false when independent evidence has been available.
In July 2015, a video revealed that 17-year-old Muhammad Ali al-Kasbeh (15) was shot dead by Israeli colonel Yisrael Shomer as he ran away (16), near Ramallah. This falsified the army’s version that the Israeli had been in imminent danger when he fired. Israeli human rights group B’Tselem warned that the high-level backing Shomer received would only reinforce an “unlawful message” to occupation soldiers that they are “allowed and even encouraged to shoot to kill a Palestinian stonethrower, even if he’s running away and does not constitute a danger”.
Video : Israeli commander shot and killed Palestinian teen, Muhammad Ali-Kosba
In December 2012, Israeli Border Police officer Nofar Mizrahi claimed she shot dead 17-year-old Muhammad al-Salaymeh (17) at a checkpoint in Hebron as the teen held a pistol to another soldier’s temple. A video proved Mizrahi’s account to be a lie (18).
Video : محاولة الاعتداء على شرطي من حرس الحدود في الخليل
In May 2014, video caught Israeli soldiers shooting dead two teens in the West Bank village of Beitunia (19) at long distance and in cold blood.
Video analysis identifies Nadeem Nawara’s killer
In July 2014, Israeli police spread false rumors (20) that 16-year-old Muhammad Abu Khudair (21) had been murdered by his family in an “honor killing” for being gay. Police later arrested several Israeli Jews in the abduction and burning to death of the youth, which occurred at a time of intense anti-Palestinian incitement (22) in Jerusalem.
The systematic impunity (23) Israel affords its occupation personnel and settlers (24) means that Israeli claims are almost never seriously investigated and Palestinians have no recourse for protection or justice.