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Friday, May 06, 2005

 

Child Shot For Not Collaborating

Soldiers fired at and seriously wounded on Wednesday child Ahmad Salah 14, from Al-Kahder village near the west bank city of Bethlehem, because he refused to collaborate and lead soldiers to the homes of stone throwers.

Salah, who was wounded in the back and the chest currently in Beit Jalah hospital, told reporters that soldiers arrested him from inside a grocery shop, took him to the nearby Road 60, and asked him to lead them to the homes of three teens who earlier had thrown stones at traveling Israeli vehicles.

"I told them I saw no stone throwers," Salah said.

Yet, soldiers took Salah to his home, searched the place and asked him to call his father. When the father, Taha Salah arrived, a soldier told him that his son threw stones at them. Taha then slapped his son on the face, but the officer told him that his son did not throw stones, but that they wanted him to lead them to the homes of three teens who had thrown stones at soldiers.

Salah told his father that he didn't see anyone throwing stones at soldiers, but soldiers didn't believe him and strongly pushed him and his father.

"I told them that you say my son didn't throw stones, leave him alone. You have no right to force him to lead you to the homes of other villagers" the father said.

One soldier pushed the father once more and warned him that if Ahmed refused to lead them to the homes of alleged stone throwers, they were going to arrest him.

"I told them to do what they want, and asked Ahmed to step out of the military Jeep. Ahmed jumped out and started to run towards our home. At this point, two soldiers started chasing Ahmed, a third soldier fired at him from few meters' distance," the father said.

"I jumped off the Jeep and ran towards home. I heard shooting and felt something penetrating my body. I fell on the ground besides the fence of my home, and woke up in the hospital," Salah said.

Ahmed affirmed that he didn't see anyone throwing stones.

The day after, Ahmed's father was called to the police station in Gush Itzion settlement, where the army officer extended an apology.

"If you aimed at arresting him, you could have shot at his legs, not his back," Taha said he told the officer.

Taha also said that he intends to file a complain, but expressed worries of future harassment.

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