Palestinian gunned down by settler in West Bank clashes | Israeli–Palestinian conflict News

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A Palestinian was killed by an Israeli settler during a clash near the city of Nablus in the occupied West Bank during protests in support of hunger-striking prisoners.    

The clash near Hawara military checkpoint in the northern West Bank erupted on Thursday when an Israeli settler in a car attempted to pass through a crowd of Palestinian protesters, with the settler and Israeli soldiers opening fire, Palestinian security sources said.    

The Palestinian killed was identified by the health ministry as Muataz Bani Shemsay, 23, from a village near Nablus. He was shot in the head.    

A photographer with The Associated Press news agency was also wounded by gunfire but was in stable condition, medics said.   

READ MORE: Palestinian hunger strikers: ‘They had no choice’

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Hundreds of Palestinians had gathered at an Israeli military checkpoint at Huwara, south of Nablus, the regular site of clashes between Israeli soldiers and Palestinian stone-throwers.    

The protest was held in support of hundreds of Palestinians in Israeli jails on hunger strike since April 17.    

An Israeli settler attempted to drive into the crowd, the security sources said, and was surrounded by protesters who threw stones at the car.    

Families fear for Palestinian hunger-striking prisoners’ lives

He then got out of the vehicle and opened fire along with soldiers who deployed, the sources said.

Petrol bombs      

On Thursday evening, hundreds of Palestinians from Al-Amari refugee camp in the West Bank city of Ramallah and nearby Qalandia gathered at a military checkpoint outside Jerusalem.

From behind a barricade of burning tyres and scrap metal they hurled rocks and petrol bombs at soldiers, who responded by firing rubber-coated metal bullets and tear gas, AFP news agency journalists at the scene reported.   

They were also protesting in solidarity with Palestinian prisoners in Israeli jails, fasting over demands for improved conditions.    

The health of some hunger strikers has already declined, but several on Thursday intensified their protest, saying they would no longer drink.    

An Israeli Prisons Service spokesman told AFP “several dozen” hunger strikers were moved from prisons in southern Israel to facilities nearer to hospitals “in case there is a need to move them very, very quickly”.    

He did not elaborate.    

READ MORE: Hunger strike leader Barghouti says eating video fake

In the Gaza Strip, armed groups pledged “not to remain with arms folded” if fasting prisoners were to meet grave physical harm.    

“The enemy only understands the language of force and we are ready to speak in the way they understand best,” they said at a news conference.    

A wave of unrest that broke out in October 2015 has claimed the lives of 264 Palestinians, 41 Israelis, two Americans, two Jordanians, an Eritrean, a Sudanese and a Briton, according to an AFP count. 

What’s behind Palestinian prisoners’ hunger strike? – Inside Story

   

Source: AFP news agency

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