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Palestinian badly injured after Israelis fire tear gas at head

Al Akhbar | March 5, 2012

A Palestinian student was in critical condition on Monday after being hit in the head by a tear gas canister when Israeli troops attacked a protest near Ramallah, medics said.

Medics at Ramallah’s main hospital confirmed that 20-year-old Mohammed Abu Awad was in intensive care after an Israeli soldier shot a tear gas canister at his head.

Palestinian security sources said the student had been injured as Israeli troops attacked a peaceful rally in support of a hunger-striking female prisoner near the Atara checkpoint, five kilometers north of Ramallah.

They initially said he had been hit in the head by a bullet during the protest, which was attended by about 40 people.

The Israeli military claimed the protest has been a “violent and illegal riot” near Birzeit.

“Palestinian demonstrators threw rocks at an IDF (army) post. Soldiers responded with riot dispersal means,” a spokeswoman said.

Israeli troops are regularly accused of deliberately firing tear gas canisters at close range, directed at the heads of protesters to cause maximum damage.

Mustafa Tamimi, 28, died of his wounds when an Israeli soldier shot a tear gas canister at his face at a peaceful rally in Nabi Saleh in December 2011.

An American Jewish student, Emily Henochowicz, 22, lost an eye at a similar West Bank protest in 2010, again after an Israeli soldier fired a tear gas canister at her face from close range.

No Israeli soldier or officer was reprimanded after either incident.

The students were demonstrating in solidarity with Hanaa al-Shalabi, a prisoner who has been on hunger strike since February 16 to protest against being held by Israel without charge, a procedure known as administrative detention. … Full article

March 5, 2012 - Posted by | Civil Liberties, Subjugation - Torture | , ,

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