Israeli forces kill Palestinian student ‘on his way to school’

Mahmoud al-Saadi, 18, was killed by the Israeli army on his way to school from the Jenin refugee camp, Palestinians say.

Crowd marches carrying a dead body wrapped in a palestinian flag
Mourners attend the funeral of Palestinian high-schooler Mahmoud al-Saadi, who was killed in a raid carried out by the Israeli army in the Jenin refugee camp in the Israeli-occupied West Bank November 21, 2022. [Raneen Sawafta/Reuters]

Ramallah, Occupied West Bank – A Palestinian high-school student has been shot dead while he was reportedly on his way to school, during a raid by Israeli forces on the northern occupied West Bank city of Jenin.

Relatives confirmed to Al Jazeera that the man killed on Monday was Mahmoud al-Saadi. The Palestinian Ministry of Health told Al Jazeera that he was 18 years old, and said he was shot in the stomach.

At least four other Palestinians were wounded after being shot, according to the ministry and local journalists.

The Palestinian Ministry of Education mourned al-Saadi in a statement on Monday. It said he was a student at the Farhat Hashad Boys Secondary School in Jenin and and that he had been killed on his way to school.

Local journalist Mujahed al-Saadi told Al Jazeera that the teen was his distant relative and that witnesses he spoke to confirmed that he was killed while standing on the street headed to the classroom.

“He was headed out of the camp. He was surprised by the army, and the army shot him moments before they pulled out [of the camp],” Mujahed told Al Jazeera.

The Israeli army said in a statement that they had returned fire during an operation to arrest nine wanted Palestinians.

“During the activity, shots were fired, and charges were thrown at the forces in the area, the fighters shot at suspects who shot at them,” the statement said.

The Palestinian foreign affairs ministry described the killing as a ” field execution” and a “heinous crime,” adding that it is “part of the daily series of killings against our people, with cover and approval at the Israeli political level.”

It said it holds the “Israeli government fully and directly responsible for this crime,” and called on “the international community to provide international protection for our people.”

Mujahed told Al Jazeera that Mahmoud was shot on the street adjacent to the one where Al Jazeera journalist Shireen Abu Akleh was shot dead on May 11 while she was covering an Israeli army raid on the Jenin refugee camp. Mujahed was a few metres away from Abu Akleh when she was killed.

Speaking about Mahmoud, Mujahed said his relative “was at the top of his class” and had three sisters.

Dozens of Israeli armoured jeeps raided Jenin and its refugee camp on Monday, just before 8am (05:00 GMT). The raid lasted about an hour.

In the camp, Israeli forces besieged the home of a wanted Palestinian man, Rateb al-Bali, while his family, including his children, were inside, and targeted the house with bullets and missiles.

Mujahed said al-Bali was “at home with his father and other family members, including his nieces and nephews, and a pregnant relative”.

“The army targeted the home with Energa grenades and bullets,” continued Mujahed, noting that no family members were injured.

Al-Bali, who escaped unhurt, eventually emerged from the house with his father and handed himself over to the Israeli army.

He has previously spent a year in Israeli prisons under administrative detention without trial or charge.

Israeli forces have been carrying out near-daily raids, arrests and killings in the northern West Bank cities of Jenin and Nablus, where Palestinian armed resistance is growing.

Across the West Bank, however, Israeli forces have for decades regularly carried out raids into Palestinian cities and villages, often leading to injuries or killings of unarmed Palestinians.

This year marks the highest number of Palestinians killed by Israel in the West Bank since 2006.

Since the start of 2022, Israeli forces have killed at least 199 Palestinians, including 47 children, in the West Bank, occupied East Jerusalem and the Gaza Strip.

Close to 8,900 others have been wounded by the Israeli army this year until November 7, in the West Bank alone, the UN has reported.

At least 25 people in Israel have also been killed this year in Palestinian attacks.

Source: Al Jazeera