Ramallah, occupied West Bank – Two Palestinian men have succumbed to their injuries after being shot by the Israeli army in separate incidents in the Israeli-occupied West Bank city of Nablus.

Mohammad Abu Kishek, 22, was pronounced dead by the Palestinian Health Ministry on Wednesday evening, less than 24 hours after being shot in the stomach during a raid by Israeli forces on Tuesday evening.

Another man, 30-year-old Mohammad Hirzallah, a fighter in the Lions’ Den armed resistance group, succumbed to injuries sustained when he was shot in the head by the Israeli army in July during armed clashes in Nablus. Hirzallah fought along two known leaders of the Lions’ Den when he was injured.

Thousands of Palestinians turned out for the funeral procession of Abu Kishek and Hirzallah, which began Thursday morning in the city of Nablus. Dozens of gunmen attended and fired live ammunition into the air in a demonstration of anger and mourning.

“There is anger and sadness… There was a clear presence of gunmen, from the Lions’ Den and other armed groups,” local journalist Mohammad Muna, who attended the funerals, told Al Jazeera.

Hirzallah, who spent four months in hospital and underwent several surgeries, died at Istishari Hospital in Ramallah.

His body was transferred to Nablus in a large convoy on Wednesday evening. Local media reported that Palestinian Authority (PA) security forces attacked the convoy and mourners at the main roundabout in Nablus with tear gas and stun grenades.

“It appears there was a requirement or security order for the gunmen not to come out in public with their guns and not to fire live ammunition into the air,” said Muna. “The presence of the security forces on the roundabout, with their armored vehicles, seems to have annoyed the men.”

“It seems strong language was exchanged and some men started chanting at the security forces, so it developed from there and led to the officers firing tear gas and live ammunition into the air,” he added.

The PA has not yet commented on the incident.

A third Palestinian was killed earlier on WednesdayAhmad Amjad Shehadeh, 16, was shot at Abu Kishek during the same raid in Nablus on Tuesday night.

The murders came as two explosions shook Jerusalem on Wednesday morning, in what Israeli authorities say was a coordinated attack by Palestinians that left one Israeli dead and at least 12 wounded.

Israeli authorities continued their search for the suspected attackers on Thursday.

The first explosion occurred near an Israeli bus station along a highway at Jerusalem’s western entrance near Givat Shaul, while the second was smaller and occurred half an hour later near Jerusalem’s northern entrance in Ramot.

Separately on Wednesday, Israeli troops demolished a recently built Palestinian primary school in the area of ​​Masafer Yatta in the southern occupied West Bank, home to more than 1,300 residents facing imminent forced displacement. The school was built by the PA with funding from the European Union (EU).

PA Prime Minister Mohammad Shtayyeh said the demolition of the school “comes as part of a war Israel is waging against our people,” including education and student violations.

The Israeli army said it demolished a building illegally constructed in an area designated as a closed firing zone.

Since 1967, Israel has designated some 18 percent of the occupied West Bank as closed military training or firing zones, deeming more than 6,000 Palestinians “illegal” residents.

Body transferred

At dawn on Thursday, Palestinian fighters handed over the body of an 18-year-old Israeli who died in a car accident near Jenin in the northern occupied West Bank after holding it for two days.

The PA had pressured fighters to release the body, which was handed over to the Israeli army at the Salem checkpoint in northern Jenin.

Tensions in the occupied West Bank and Israel have been running high since last year.

Israeli army raids and killings of Palestinians in the occupied West Bank have increased and are occurring almost daily, paralleling a increase in Palestinian armed attacksas well as one increase in settler attacks against Palestinians.

More than 200 Palestinians, including more than 50 children, have been killed by Israel in the occupied territories of East Jerusalem, the West Bank and the besieged Gaza Strip. deadliest year for Palestinians since 2006.

More than 25 people have already been killed in Israel.

The developments come as Benjamin Netanyahu, charged with forming the next Israeli government after coming out victorious this month, continues negotiations to form a new coalition with far-right and ultra-nationalist parties.

On Wednesday, Netanyahu announced that he had agreed with his ally, the head of the Religious Zionist party Bezalel Smotrich, to give the latter control of the Israeli army charged with governing the occupied West Bank, known as COGAT.

The position sees Smotrich, a controversial figure who has openly encouraged violence against Palestinians, put in charge of Area C, which is the 60 percent of the occupied West Bank under full Israeli military and civilian control, and where all illegal Israeli settlements are located. established.

Smotrich will oversee Palestinian construction in Area C, where it is located already very limited. He will also be responsible for Israeli settlement construction, security coordination between the Israeli army and the PA, and permits for Palestinian workers in Israel.

In 2019, in response to the International Criminal Court (ICC) decides to investigate alleged Israeli war crimes, Smotrich summoned to dismantling the PA and said the ICC was a “political, anti-Semitic institution”.



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