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Palestinian man shot, tied to jeep says Israeli forces gave no explanation

In News, World
June 24, 2024

Mujahed Abadi says has not been able to sleep since Israeli forces shot him, beat him and strapped him to the hood of a military vehicle two days ago, apparently using him as a human shield.

Speaking to Al Jazeera Arabic from Ibn Sina Hospital in the West Bank on Monday, Abadi said Israeli troops did not offer an explanation for their “crimes”.

Video footage of the incident in Jenin in the northern occupied West Bank on Saturday has sparked international outrage and calls for accountability.

Abadi, 24, said he had stepped outside his uncle’s house in Jenin while Israeli troops were conducting a raid in the neighbourhood.

He was shot in the arm and the leg and took shelter behind a nearby vehicle. He said after nearly two hours of hiding while his wounds were bleeding, Israeli troops forced him out of his hideout and started hurling punches and kicks at him, including at his bullet wounds.

“It was a big shock. I was wishing I was dead at that moment,” Abadi said, adding that although he was clearly unarmed, the troops did not provide him with any medical aid.

Instead, the Israeli troops wanted to inflict more pain on him, he said.

“Two soldiers lifted me up from my hands and feet and swung me back and forth to throw me at the military vehicle,” Abadi said.

“They did it the first time, I fell on the ground. On top of my injuries, they dropped me. The second time one of them picked me up and threw me at the vehicle.”

The hood of the vehicle was extremely hot and left him with burns all over his back, he told Al Jazeera.

He said after being driven around on the military jeep, he was eventually dropped off at a house and transferred to Palestinian medics.

“Their only concern was to torture and beat me. They committed these crimes against me, beat me and tortured me, then they asked for my name,” the 24-year-old Palestinian said.

“They did not offer me any explanation – at all. On the contrary, they wanted to beat me some more. They did not tell me anything. All I remember is that they were laughing while they were beating me.”

The Israeli military confirmed the incident on Saturday, describing Abadi as “one of the suspects” targeted in the raid who was “injured and apprehended”.

“In violation of orders and standard operating procedures, the suspect was taken by the forces while tied on top of a vehicle,” the Israeli military said in a statement.

“The conduct of the forces in the video of the incident does not conform to the values of the [Israeli military]. The incident will be investigated and dealt with accordingly.”

However, Abadi said he was a bystander, stressing that he is not wanted by Israel, as evidenced by his brief detention.

The Israeli military has been regularly conducting deadly raids in the West Bank over the past few years – a campaign that intensified after the start of the war on Gaza in October.

At least 553 Palestinians, including 137 children, have been killed by Israeli forces in the West Bank since October 7, according to Palestinian health authorities, and Israel has also detained thousands of other people in the territory.

Saturday’s incident in Jenin received international condemnation.

Belgium’s Deputy Prime Minister Petra De Sutter said she was “shocked by the violence” committed by Israeli forces.

“How many of these inhumanities do we need to witness before sanctioning Israel?” De Sutter wrote in a social media post on Sunday.

United Nations Special Rapporteur on the Occupied Palestinian Territories Francesca Albanese described the treatment of Abadi as “human shield in action”.

“It is flabbergasting how a state born 76 years ago has managed to turn international law literally on its head,” she wrote on the social media platform X.

“This risks being the end of multilateralism, which for some influential member states no longer serves any relevant purpose.”

Abadi’s injuries include a broken arm from the impact of the bullet, a wounded leg and burns on his back, as well as psychological scars, he said.

“To date, I absolutely cannot sleep. I am suffering from a strong psychological situation. I try to sleep, but I wake up immediately,” Abadi said.

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