Israeli forces tie wounded Palestinian to jeep in West Bank raid

Medics identified the Palestinian as Mujahid Raed Abbadi, 24, who said he lives in the Jenin refugee camp

Published - June 23, 2024 10:06 pm IST - Jenin

Israeli army straps Palestinian on military jeep during raid in Jenin, in this screengrab from a video, in the Israeli-occupied West Bank, June 22, 2024.

Israeli army straps Palestinian on military jeep during raid in Jenin, in this screengrab from a video, in the Israeli-occupied West Bank, June 22, 2024. | Photo Credit: Reuters

Israeli troops tied a wounded Palestinian to a military vehicle during a raid in the occupied West Bank city of Jenin, the Army said on June 23, admitting that soldiers had violated operational procedures.

Footage of the incident, which occurred on Saturday, has gone viral and shows a man strapped horizontally to the bonnet of a military jeep as it passes through a narrow alley.

Medics identified the Palestinian as Mujahid Raed Abbadi, 24, who said he lives in the Jenin refugee camp.

The military said a Palestinian man was wounded during a "counterterrorism operation" to arrest wanted suspects in the area of Wadi Burqin, between the town of Burqin and Jenin.

During an exchange of fire between troops and militants in Burqin's Jabriyat neighbourhood, a Palestinian was wounded and apprehended, the military said in a statement.

The statement referred to him as a "suspect", but did not specify any accusations against Mr. Abbadi, who medics said was being treated at Jenin's Ibn Sina hospital, and not in Israeli custody.

The military said: "In violation of orders and standard operating procedures, the suspect was taken by the forces while tied on top of a vehicle."

He was later transferred to the Palestinian Red Crescent for treatment, it said.

"The conduct of the forces in the video of the incident does not conform to the values of the IDF (military)," the statement said.

"The incident will be investigated and dealt with accordingly."

Francesca Albanese, the United Nations special rapporteur on the rights situation in the Palestinian territories, suggested the troops were using Mr. Abbadi to shield themselves from gunfire.

"#HumanShielding in action", Albanese wrote on social media platform X, sharing footage of the incident.

At the hospital, Mr. Abbadi said he was hit and wounded as he stepped out of his uncle's house in Jabriyat.

"I tried to withdraw and get inside the house, but they started shooting", hitting him in the hand, Mr. Abbadi said in his hospital bed.

'Stomped my head'

He said he fell to the ground in an area behind the military jeep and was hit once more, with a bullet penetrating his leg.

According to Mr. Abbadi, rescuers or medics were unable to reach him for more than two hours as he lay on the ground.

"I started crawling" trying to escape as fighting continued around him, he said, before the Israeli troops noticed him.

"When they (the soldiers) arrived they stomped on my head and hit my face, my injured leg and hand," Mr. Abbadi recalled.

"They were laughing and playing while they hit me."

The soldiers lifted him and threw him on the ground before tying him to the bonnet of the jeep, he said.

Bahaa Abu Hammad, the doctor treating Mr. Abbadi at Ibn Sina hospital, said "he has burns on his back from neck to lower back" from being tied to the military jeep in the scorching summer heat.

Jenin has long been a stronghold for Palestinian militant groups, and the Israeli Army routinely carries out raids in the city and an adjacent refugee camp.

Violence in the West Bank, which had already surged before the Israel-Hamas war broke out on October 7, has only escalated since.

At least 553 Palestinians have been killed in the West Bank by Israeli troops or settlers since the Gaza war broke out, according to Palestinian officials.

Attacks by Palestinians have killed at least 14 Israelis in the West Bank over the same period, according to an AFP tally of Israeli official figures.

The Gaza Strip has been gripped by more than eight months of war since Hamas's unprecedented October 7 attack on Israel, which resulted in the deaths of 1,194 people, mostly civilians, according to an AFP tally based on Israeli official figures.

Militants took 251 hostages, 116 of whom remain in Gaza, including 41 the army says are dead.

Israel's military offensive on Gaza has since killed at least 37,598 people, also mostly civilians, according to the Hamas-run territory's health ministry.

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